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LIBRARY 

UNIVERSITY OP 
CALIFORNIA 



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THE PATHAN REVOLT 



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NORTH WEST INDIA. 



CHAPTER L 



INTRODUCTORY. 




INCE the return of tie Chitral Relief Expedition tLiere 
bad been peace in North-West India, and it scemod 
probable that the present year was to pass without 
any disturbances amongst the turbulent tribesmen 
on our Frontier. The political horizon to the or- 
dinary observer seemed to be without a cloud. There was 
po Umra Khan with ambitions of sovereignty, prepared to 
plunge through murder, rapine and the displeasure of the 
(SiVAar to gain his ends. True there were pestilential fellows 
(who were known to be preaching discontent to the tribesmen 
jbut there was little if any thing to show that these firebrands 
Iwere sowing with more marked success than usual the seeds of 
•discord and fanaticism. If there was anything which caused 
joncern to Indian observers of political phenomena beyond 
pur far flung frontier battle line it was to be found in certain 
rvenfs which had happened in Afghanistan, and which revived 
ome of the old fears with regard to the Durani Chit f who 
ccupioa the gaMi of that country. Our friend and ally had 
)oen devoting himself with much persistency to the religious 
lature of sovereignty wbich he wields over the followers of 



I 



251 



the Prophet in North- West ludia and beyoud, aud the means 
employed to solidify bis supreme headship a3 the light of re- 
ligion were such as to be considered antagonistic to the preser- 
Tation of harmonious relations between the tribesmen and the 
Indian Government. There was the book, Twakim-ud-din, 
inspired by the Amir himself and written to his commancl, 
-which impressed upon true Muhammadans the essential and 
all important character of the Jehad — that war of religious 
fanaticism laid down by the Koran as the duty of the follower 
of Islam to wage against the intidel. The book was certainly 
a remarkable production and even assuming that the greater 
part of it was merely a rehearsal and exposition of doctrines 
laid down in the Muhammadan gospels, it was none the less 
singular that Abdur Rahman should feel the necessity to pro- 
pagate afresh its doctrines, and give to them his own imperial 
impress at such a time. Fanatical Mussalmaus realise only too 
completely at present that the Jehad is, under given circum- 
stances, a part of their creed, and it was with reason argued 
that to have its meaning newly interpreted in times of peace 
by a Muhammadan ruler was in itself more or less of an incite- 
ment to spread out the green flag of Islam and to smite the 
infidel wherever found. The other acts of the Amir increased 
rather than diminished this uneasy feeling, and, to give topiciil 
significance to the book, which is not itself of very recent date, 
be a<:sen.bled at his Coiivt the religious men of infiaeuce from all 
parts of his country, and in a manner held conference with them 
as a monarch might with his counsellors. These religious men — 
mullahs as they are known in India— are the levers by which 
the fanaticism of a frontier tribe is set in motion, as the Britisli 
Government has over and over again found to its cost. Why 
did Abdur Rahman hold a conference of these men r If it wa.s| 
to enjoin them to preserve peace on the frontier, where wa:^ 
the necessity ? Was not the frontier in peace ? These were the 
pertinent questions asked. 

It is foreign to the purpose of this narrative to deal at 
length with the causes- supposed or real— of the most general 
tribal conflagration which the annals of Britain in India record j 
but it is neces.sary to refer to some of the principal ones in pass-j 
ing. UndoubtSLUy when the Malakand riffair supervened out 
Tochi, and the other developments followed with a suddenness 
which was appalling, both press and public in lieu of othei 
adequate explanatiou pointed to Kabul and its Amir. Had uo< 



3 

ills Mullabs incited the people in the Swat, Mohmand, Afridi 
and Orakzai countries torise and overthrow with murder and 
piUage the authority of the British Raj ? It was a holj war, 
with Abdur Rahman in the back ground, and it meant the final 
culmination of ?. tribal revolt into another armed meeting of 
the troops of Amir and Queen-Empress beyond the Khyber 
Pass. The Indian Government shared so far the suspicions of 
the public mind — suspicions which received confirmation from 
Shabkadaraud later at Bedmani where the Amir's soldiers were 
known to have fought against us — that a strong remonstrance 
was sent to his Highness. From Kabul came a denial of 
responsibility, and a disavowal of the tribesmen and their 
actions. From Ibis point the Amir was rehabilated more or 
less in genenil British good opinion, and as he gave further 
proofs of his good will — such as the renouncing of the Atridis 
when they appealed to him as their religious war lord for 
support, and the closing of his territory to fugitives from the 
wrath o^ the Sirkar — it was believed in most quarters that bo 
had not broken his troth plighted in open JDarbar at Rawalpiudi 
and that he had not been a traitor to the Queen and Empress 
against whose enemies he had sworn with uplifted sword 
ever to array himself and his forces. 

But hard thinkers :ind students of our ever present fron- 
tier question were not disposed thus to acquit the Durani Chief 
of complicity, and even yet, whilst some are content to lay all 
blame for Afghan participation on the unauthorised shouhlers 
of General Ghulam Hyder Khan, the Red Chief of Asmai-, 
others still openly maintain that behind the Comiuander-iu- 
Chief has always loomed Abdur Rahman himself, who )ias his 
own grievances against the Indian Government, and whilst not 
anxious to draw upon himself the wrath of the Sirkar — with 
more than probable forcible abdication of the gaddi — was still 
not averse to instigating unofficially a policy of vexation and 
irritation, which it would be difficult to actually bring home 
to him. The apologists of the Amir are also numerous and they 
have strong cards as well. There can be no doubt that Abdur 
Rahman, strong ruler as he admittedly is, oftentimes finds his 
position as ruler of Afghanistan with its fanatical cabals almost 
untenable. He has to "pursue a strangely r ugged path, fraught 
■with many dangers, and we are asked to believe that his assump- 
tion of religious headship over Indian Mussalmans, and his 
conferences with the religious headmen of the country, eacii of 



whom is practically a king iu his own sphere of influence, is simp- 
ly the wise conciliatory move of an astute ruler. Besides, what 
beyond the satisfying of some petty spite was Abdur Rahman to 
gain by quarrelling with tho power whose subsidy he is pleased 
to accept ? However this may be, officially the Amir of Kabul was 
vindicated by the Viceroy and his Government, and other 
reasons were put forward to account for the unparalleled con- 
Tulsion on our North-West Frontier. Let me refer to these 
incidentally. 

First and foremost of course came the charge which attribut- 
ed everything to Britain's aggressive policy north of the Indus. 
Jhe hatchets which had been buried after the Chitral Campaign 
were now disinterred, and loud has been the clang of steel as the 
exponents of the two frontier policies have fonght afresh the old 
tattle. " is it wise to deprive tribes of the independence which 
ihey value above all things and to impose an authority v/hich can 
only be maintained by a large addition both in men and money y 
^heir rugged country is of no strategic value to us, and U we are 
free on the score of justice is it expedient to advance U-om India 
on Central Asia and so increase our responsibilities r" So main- 
tained the "masterly inactivity" pp.rty. "What we are doing 
on the North-West Frontier is necessary " replies those wlio up- 
hold the existing policy, " anarchy and civilisation cannot march 
peacefully side by side, we are cst-iblishing our civilising 
influence gradually all along the Afghan border, and both from 
strategical reasons and to prevent our territory from being raided 
we are bound to continue in the course now taken." Both par- 
ties have fought loudly in the Home press, and in many quar- 
ters it has been contentedly accepted that the policy pursued 
"by the Indian Government for so many years past is responsible 
for the present flare up. "You broke your word in Chitral," 
shout its opponents, " you retain the country against your pledged 
word, and you have put the fear of annexation in the heart of 
every Pathan tribe." Whilst denying that the forward if not 
aggressive policy has been responsible for the tribal convulsion 
which spread from Malakand to the Tochi Valley, and regrett- 
ing that India's almost bankrupt treasury should have to pay 
crores of rupees on military operations, upholders of the present 
policy have, nevertheless, welcomed the present disturbances in- 
so-much as they have necessitated " the lifting of the purdah " 
from troublesome countries and by forcing us to smite hip and 
thigh will compel the indolent mind of the tribesmen to realise 



tlie power and might of the Sirkar and disturb no more iLe 
peace of the frontier. 

But other people, and in India much more than at Home 

where the war has been almost wholly one of shibboleths— have 
looked elsewhere for an explanation of the tribal risings. We 
are told that the war waged so disastrously to the Christians 
on the plains of Thessaly has inspired Muhammadans all over 
India with the idea of a war of extermination on the infidel. 
What the Turk has done to the Greeks the followers of Islam 
can repeat with the English in India, and in the excited state 
of public feeling induced by the Calcutta riots, the murders of 
Europeans at Lahore, Poena and Peshawar, and the seditious 
nature of much of the writings in the native press, much 
popular credence was given to this idea. All theories which 
suggested a general explanation leaned more or less to Muham- 
madan fanaticism, and the one to which some high Indian 
authorities attached themselves was that the successful opera- 
tions of Afghans against the natives of Kaffiristan had fired 
the enthusiasm of the Mussalman tribesman, and by flattering 
his known inordinate vanity, had induced him to listen to the 
advice of the Mullahs to next attempt the extermination of tbo 
king of Infidels— the British Sirkar. 

It is conceivable that any one of these theories is an explana- 
tion, or that these causes, each in turn, have helped to kindle 
the spirit of revolt. Or it is possible that the true reasons for the 
great frontier disturbances of 1897 are to be found in purely local 
causes, and that the subsequent gigantic proportions to which 
they reached were due entirely to the momentary success over 
the British Raj which flattered the characteristic vanity of the 
fanatical Mussalman on the frontier and made him believe 
that the days of the Sii-kar were numbered, that the flag of 
Islam was to be unfurled and all infidels from Kabul to Cape 
Comorin swept into the sea. 

It is now generally accepted that the Tochi Valley affair 
was not part of any general plot, but had its explanation in a 
miserable tribal story of lying and deceit to attain private 
ends— a true Patlian procedure. From Tochi to Malakand, 
from Malakand to Shabkadar, from Shabkadar to the Khyber, 
from the Kh\ oer to Kohat, the Kurram Valley, and the 
Saumua range of outposts the fiery cross spread with un- 
i)araliH}ed swiftness, and almost before we knew the tribes were 



6 

discouteuted lo! wc find the entire frontier lino ablaze with 
armed men. Leaving Tocbi ont of the question as a mere 
bastard preliminary of the general rising we have the (om- 
mencement of the revolt at Mahikand and Chakdara, and if it 
can be proved, which is denied, that the natives had deep objec- 
tions to the policy \Yhicb had been pursued in the Swat Valley 
during the past three years, and which they were willing to 
protest against by force of arms, it is not impossible to believe 
that the large proportions to wliich it subsequently attained 
were due to the lengthy beleaguring of the Alalakand and Chak- 
dara garrisons, which was tantamount in the opinion of the rude 
and uncultured frontier men to the annihilation of the British 
Raj. From the Swat to the Orakzai, Afridi anei Mob maud count- 
ries, the story of the heavy fighting at Malakaud and Chnkdara- 
spread from village to village, embellished and magnified in its- 
progress in the accustomed manner of the East till it appeared 
in the splendid light of a victorious driving of the Infidel out 
of Indil, and a general Mussalman call to arms. This is borne 
out by the fact that tribes with whom we had no possible 
quarrel, and whom we have treated with the greatest possible 
deference were among those who joined in the revolt. The 
Mamunds, who inflicted such great losses on General Jeffreys' 
brigade, had been left alone by our troops during the Chitral 
campaign although they did much to merit severe punishment, 
and they simply joined in the present disturbances from that 
pure love of a fight which is secoua nature to the Pathan and 
becomes additionally attractive when the feringhee or infidel foe is 
the objective. 

With astonishing rapidity the conflagration spread until in a 
short period the whole frontier line from Malakand to Kurram 
was ablaze and all the tribesmen more or less were under arms. 

Troops were pushed to the front with unparalleled despatch 
and quickly we had an army on our frontier line large enough to 
deal with any emergency. Never before has Britain's might 
been exhibited with such prodigality to our enemies in Central 
Asia ; but on no previous occasion has there been a conflagration 
which extended over so large a part of our frontier line, and 
brought us into collision with so many fighting tribes. India's 
north-west frontier has always been a centre of fanatical 
cyclones, but hitherto we have only had convulsions in more or 
less restricted areas. Individually we have had quarrels with 



most of the tribes, and the Afridis, Orakzais, Yusufsais, Swalis, 
Maris and Bonerwals have all at different times come into 
sharp contact with our troops ; up to this year the kuown 
diversity of interests and the spirit of intertribal vendeUa anima- 
ting the various sections has prevented a general resort to arms 
against us. It has always been considered, however, that when 
the various races of Pathans could sink their internecine 
warfare and engage us iu unison, even Britain's might would 
have to be put forward to quell the trouble which would ensue. 
This is what has largely happened in this year of Diamond 
Jubilee grace, and for the first time iu our frontier history we 
have seen the most powerful Pathan tribes from Boner to 
Bolan take the field in unison and flaunt defiance at the Sirkar. 
In Malakand and the Swat Valley, serious as was the rising, 
it was speedily dispersed by the rapid clespatch of our troops 
in that direction, and at Shabkadar there was but one outburst 
of tribal raiding, after which the Mohmands showed little or no 
opposition. It was when the first signs of serious dis^ffoction 
among the Afridis and the Orakzais— with the exception of 
the Waziris, the two most powerful and numerous fighting 
clans of the frontier — manifested themselves, that the full 
seriousness of the revolt was clearly seeu. The Afridis 
have long been our friends and have been paid by the Indian 
Government for services rendered in keeping open the 
Khyber Pass. A rising on their part meant, if not seizuire 
of actual British territory, then at least tlie restoring to a state of 
anarchy of a great highway which the ludian Government had 
taken upon itself to keep open and safe of ingress and egress. 
The mere fact that the Afridis and Orakzais had taken to the 
war path would be quite enough iu itself to spread the spirit 
of revolt to one and all of the smaller tribes, and a general 
conflagration might confidently be expected. The fighting man- 
hood of our trans-border tribesmen is roughly r j-tim.'^.ted at 
200,000 men, variously armed with rifles, matchlocks and swords. 
On the frontier where the personal equation looms so largely 
the first desire of a fighting man is to possess a rifle, and whe- 
ther he goes to the military lines at Pesh^,war and robs a sepoy 
or saves up bis pice until be has the weight of a weapon in 
rupees — at which price he can purchase — it is his life's aifabition 
to arm himself in this manner. These tribesmen, it should be 
remembered, are all Muhammadans and lanatical in their 
faith and hatred of the infidel. Excepting in Beluchistan oar 



8 

Government Las never succeeded in taming tbem and to-day 
they are almost as irreconeileable as when we first mixed in 
frontier matters. 

The trans-frontier tribesmen may conveniently be classed 
into four divisions from north to south : (1) the clans between 
the southern limits of the Gilgit Agency and Peshawar ; (2) those 
holding the hills between the Khjber Pass and the Kurram 
Valley"; (3) the Waziri and cognate tribes of the Sulimau 
Range ; (4) the Beluchis aud those under control of the Governor- 
General's Agent in Beluchistan. In the first group we get the 
Kohistanis and Cis-Iudus Swatis, the Black Mountain tribes, the 
Hindustani fanatics, the Bonerwals, the Swa,tis of Swat, the 
Mohmands and Bajouris. The second group comprise the most 
savage and warlike of the frontier tribesmeu. Taking the 
country between the Khyber-Kabul route, the Safed Koh aud 
the Kohat District we get an area of 4,000 square miles. First 
and foremost among these clans come the Afridis — a powerful 
tribe with powerful subdivisions — who live in savage indepen- 
dence ai)d have never brooked control from Afghanistan north nor 
Hindustan south of the Kbyber. In the second group also are 
the Orakzais and Zaimukhts both possessing many aud valiant 
fighting men. In the Kurram Valley the population is largely 
composed of Turis, who are Shias or unorthodox Mussulmans 
hostilely regarded by the Sunnis. They are our good friends 
and being naturally, like most frontier tribes, of a martial 
spirit, they readily enlist in the Kurram Frontier Militia 
and arc reliable soldiers. In the third group are the tribes of 
the Suliman Range, of whom the Waziris alone are of import- 
ance and are good specimens of the free, fierce, hardy moun- 
taineers of Afghanistan. It is with the Darwesh section of the 
Waziris that we had to deal for the Maizar disaster. The 
fourth or Beluchistan group needs no special reference here, as 
the tribesmen have in no way associated themselves with the 
present disturbances. 

The explanrition or local causes put forward for the rising 
of the Afridis wore three in number, viz., the increase in thfe 
salt tax, the fact that their women who ran away to Peshawar 
were not sent back by our Government, and their objection to 
our presence as far as the tomb of Akhund in Swat. To thes'e 
might be added a fourth, the fear that a military road would be 
built along the Khyber Pass which they themselves would 



9 

Lave to construct. The Hadda Mullab aud the Mad Fakir from 
Swat were the ineaus of rousing disaffection on tbese points and 
they also succeeded in bringing the discontent of the Orakzais 
with regard to the forts on the Samana Range to a head. 

With the rising of the Afridis and Orakzais and other 
cogQp.te tribes in the Peshawar and Kurram Valleys it was 
clear that it was no border raid with which the Government 
had to deal and our plans were shaped accordingly. Sir Bindon 
Blood had been at the first onset sent to Malakand with a Field 
Force, whilst reserve brigades were also formed to go to the 
Swat Valley or wherever necessary. When the Shabkadar affair 
happened it was promptly decided to over-run the Mohmand 
country. General EUes, with two brigades under General 
Westmacott and Major-General Macgregor, was ordered to enter 
the country from Shabkadar in the south, while Sir Bindon Blood 
having completed the submission of the Swatis, was to enter 
it from the northern side with two brigades under General 
Wodehouse and General JeflVeys. A meeting of the two forces 
was arranged to take place at Nawagai. Whilst Sir Bindon Blood 
advanced through the Mohmand country to meet General Elles, 
General Jeffreys was left behind at the foot of the RambatPass, 
and in this neighbourhood he was attacked on the night of 
September 14th and subsequently, and heavy losses in ofEcers 
and men iuflicted on us by rhe Mamunds who live on the 
borders of Kunar and Atghanistan. The juncture between 
General Sir Bindon Blood and General Elles was made, after 
whicii Sir Bindon Blood was compelled to retur*^ and complete 
the quelling of the Mamund opposition, which had been parti- 
cularly obstinate and deadly to General Jeffreys' brigade. 

The rising of the Afridis and the loss of the Khyber Pass, 
which happened towards the latter half of August, determined 
Government on the despatch of a large force under Lieutenant 
General Sir William Lockhart, K. 0. B., Commander-in-Chief 
elect of India, to lift the purdah from Tirah, that terra incogniiato 
Europeans, whither the Afridi and Orakzai retire in the summer 
from the overpowering heat of the plains. The punishment of 
the Afridis, however, was delayed until the other punitive ex- 
peditions had been completed and all other discontent along the 
frontier had been subdued. In quick succession on the Afridi 
rising came the disturbance in the Kurram Valley and alQjog 
the Samana Range, where the gallant little garrisons, maintain- 



10 

ing our isolated ont-posts were attacked and besipgea wltli 
fiendish pertinacity and determination. General Yeatiuaim 
Biof^s was in charge of our column at Kobat and he wa.s attacked 
hv a strong Afridi-Orakzai combination when raarchiu^ along 
the ridge to the relief of the Samana forts. The siege of the 
forts on tha Samana provides some of the most stirring pages 
in the history of Indian frontier warfare. 

With the successful pacification of the Swat Valley, the 
peaceful submission of the Mohmandf and the final success of Sir 
Bindon Blood among the stubborn Mamunds the first act in the 
frontier war drama of 1897 ended, and the curtain was rung down 
preparatory to tlie second act, when Sir William Lockhart with 
the flower of the British and Indian army marches on the 
plateau of Tirah, and in their own fastnesses prcves to the 
truculent Afridis and Orakzais tliat though the patience of the 
Sirkar is as enduring as a summer's day yet his ra-m when put 
forth neraiust his foes is long as a winter's iiisrht. 




TROUBLE SN TH£ TOOMJ VALLEY. 

CHAPTER II. 

BLACK TREACHERY AND D13ASTi'«:R. 

r^QST a day before the news of the Maizar nffair wa.=? 
known, a letter appeared in the Civil ar,d Milirary 
Gazette suggesting that, as a means of celebrating the 
Y Diamond Jubilee, an expedition might be started 

against some frontier tribes. This jocular suggestion 
wa.s somewhat stavtlingly complied with, the only differerrC' 
being that instead of an expedition being initiated a la Sir 
Lepel Griffin, to give our troops something to do, the tribesmen 
themselves rendel?ed punitive measures imperative. 

In June Mr. Gee, a Political Ofl^icer in the Tochi Valley 
-svas being accompanied by a military escort to Sheianr.r; p.r'd 
Maizar, two villages about twelve miles above Datta Klici 
cnmp, and on the main Tochi Valley road to Bannu fiou: 
Gh';i/.ni. The Tochi Valley is one of the main highwaj's into 



11 

the heart of Afgbaniftian, and is licn, productive and fairly 
well cultivafed, studded with moie or less wealthy villages, 
and wnlled and defended by flanking towers. The people who 
live along this highway are Dawaris, the very name of whom, 
is, we are told, a byword of reproach. The Dawari is described 
as eminently vicions and additionally degraded, and an object of 
supreme contempt to the other wnrlike tribes on all sides. 
The business which had carried Mr. Gee into the Madda Khel 
conn try above Sheranna was to fix on a site for the most west- 
erly levy post in the valley, and also to meet, by arrangement, 
the Madda Khel Maliks there and discuss the question of the 
distribution of a fine which was outstanding against the tribes. 
It is stated that originally Mr. Gee had fixed his visit for 
June 9th, but that rain caused its postponement for a day, 
and that possibly this delay gave the tribesmen the necessary 
time in which to lay plans for the treacherous attack. Cer- 
tain it is that not a man on our side apprel.ended evil. 

The escort consisted of 200 rifles, 1st Sikhs, Lieutenant 
Colotiel A. C. Bunny in command, with Lieutenant A. J. M. 
Higginson; 100 rifles, 1st Punjab Infantry, under Lieutenant 
C. S. S. Seton Browne; two guns No. 6 Bombay Mountain 
Battery under Captain J. IT, Browne, R.A., and Lieutenant 
H. A. Cruikshank, R.A.; and 12 sabres, 1st Punjab Cavalry, 
with Surgeon-Captain C. C. Cassidy, 1st Sikhs, as Medical 
Officer. The escort marched from camp Datta Kbel at 5 a.m., 
and after halting twice on the road, reached Alaizar at, 
9-30, where they were met by the Maliks. Maizar consists of a .' , 
number of cultivated terraces gradually sloping down to the * 
Shawal Algad, and the men were halted on the highest terrace ' 
at an open space under some trees, not far from a kot belonging ^ 
to the Drepilare section of the Madda Khels. This spot was 
pointed out by the Maliks themselves as the best place to camp, 
as there was plenty of room, and water was avail.'iblo near. 
The guns were placed close to a garden wall in a Held clear 
of the trees. The approach to this camping ground it over 
a small hotal and down a narrow lane through the fields, 
bounded by low stone walls. The lane runs straight from the 
hotal to the camping ground, which is close to a threshing 
floor and then curves round to the north to the Jiof. Althongli 
nothing had happened to excite suspicion all the usual precau- 
tions when camping in a hostile conntiy were taken. The men 
were ordered to keep their arms with them and not to pile 



12 

tliem, and guards, pickets and sentries placed where considered 
necessary. As soon as this "was settled Mr. Gee and^ 
Captain Browne, R. A., taking the sowars, 1st Punjab' 
Cavalry, and accompanied by some of the Maliks, visited Dotoj, ^ 
which lies a few miles further on in the Tochi, while those left 
behind made themselves comfortable under the trees. 

The Political Officer returned about 12 o'clock ; the 
question of the fine was said by the Maliks to have been set- 
tled amicably ; food was provided by the leading Maliks for 
all the Mussalman sepoys, and there was not the slightest 
suspicion of unfriendliness on the part of the tribesmen. After 
tiffln, about 2 p.m.. Colonel Bunny ordered the pipers to play 
for the villagers to listen to, and they played one tune. Just 
as they began another, a man was seen waving a drawn sword 
on a tower in the Drepilare hot, and the villagers suddenly 
cleared off towards the village. A single shot was fired, 
apparently as a sigual, and a fusillade at once commenced, 
directed at the British officers, who were together under a tree, 
and the Sikhs. This was taken up on all sides, the sepoys in the 
meantime falling in at once and takiug up positions, Disasters 
quickly befell our men, and Lieutenant Seton Browne 
was hit in the leg at the second or third shot, and Colonel 
Bunny, the commander, was mortally wounded. Almost 
immediately after our guns opened fire and did great execu- 
tion among a party of men who attempted to rush them. 
Bravely our officers stood to their posts, but as they were in an 
exposed position the two British officers afforded an easy mark 
for the men in the bagh. Captain Browne was hit at about 
the fifth shot and Lieutenant Cruikshank shot dead almost 
directly after. 

This was all within five minutes of the first shot, and 
as the enemy's fire did not slacken and the guns haxl 
expended their ammunition, a movement was made bacK 
towards the kotal, the guns limbering up and going first up the 
lane. As the Infantry retired, the Waziris came out in grea,t 
numbers from all sides, but a stand was made round the corner 
of the bagh to allow the wounded men to retire. Furtlaer 
disasters befell the little force and the fire of the enemy being 
directed at the British officers Lieutenant Higginson was shgt 
through the arm and Surgeon-Captain Cassidy in the knee. 
The Waziris were, however, successfully held in check bjr a 



18 

mixed party of Ist Sikhs and Isfc Panjab Infantry, and the 
latter retired up to the hotal when everything was over. Suc- 
cessive positions were taken up on the six ridges which stietch 
from Maizar to the plain above Sheranna, a distance of about 
two miles, and though the Waziris followed up in a most 
determined fashion and occupied all availing positions on the 
hills around, the retirement was perfect. Lieutenant Higgin- 
son was shot in the arm a second time while crossing the 
bills. 

All the British military officers were now wounded, two- 
of them mortally, yet they all continued to carry out their 
duties and lead their men. The circumstances must be ad- 
mitted to have been trying in the extreme for the troops, and 
their staunchness is worthy of the highest praise. Subadars 
Karain Singh, 1st Sikhs, Sundar Singh, 1st Punjab Infantry, 
and Jemadar Sherzad, 1st Sikhs, behaved with the greatest 
gallantry Getting together a party of their men they made 
a most determined stand by the wall of a garden and from it 
they covered the first withdrawal, themselves under heavy fire, 
remaining till the enemy closed with them. Subadar Sundar 
Singh, 1st Punjab Infantry, was now killed, and by far the 
gTeater number of the casualties of the day took place here. 
Under cover of this stand th» wounded were carried and 
helped away, and the guns withdrawn, along a lane, to a low 
hotal about 300 yards distant, where a fresh position was 
occupied. The survivors of the party at the garden wall then 
withdrew. The retirement was continued by successive units, 
very deliberately and with complete regularity, positions being 
held on the ridges stretching from south to north until the 
Sheranna plain was reached (about two miles). All this time 
the enemy was constantly enveloping the flanks. The main 
road which had been taken in the morning had been abandoned, 
as it was commanded on both sides, and parties of the 
eneniy were advancing from Sheranna. Lieutenant Higginson 
was during this part of the retirement, again shot in the arm. 

Eventually, about 5-30 p.m., a good position was found, 
about a mile from the last of the above-mentioned ridges. 
Reinforcements began to appear in sight, and the enemy was 
beaten off. The fact that the retreat, over a distance of three 
miles, occupied 3| hours, shows how stubbornly the enemy 
was resisted and what admirable courage and discipline our 



14 

brave soldiers dlsplaj'cd. Throughout the tribesmen made the 
most determined attempts to get to close quarters and annihilate 
our men, and ontside the Drepihiri Jiot and at the corner of the 
garden there was ^reat slaughter, and much individual bravery 
wasdisplaj^ed. Thenumber of the enemy al the first onset is 
estimated at 500, but constant reinforcements during the retire- 
ment raised their numbers to probably much over 1,000, The}'' 
ai e understood to have lost 100 killed and many wounded. 

Some Kotal sowars had been sent to camp to call for rein- 
forcements, which reached the force in the last-mentioned 
position about 6-15 p.m. They consisted of two companies, 1st 
Sikhs, under Lieutenant H. S. Brett, R. A., accompanied bv Lieu- 
tenant E. N. Stockley, R. E., and brought fresh ammunition, 
which was terribly needed. They had covered the distance 
from camp (9 miles) in less than an hour and a half— a 
magnificent piece of marching and an admirable preliminary to 
the other feats of endurance shown by our troops on the march 
throughout the subsequent disturbances. With the ammunition 
now received the heights around and the village of She- 
ranna were shelled (the latter at 1,400 yards), with the result 
that the enemy finally retired, and the village was partially set on 
fire. The remainder of the admirable withdi'awal was unmolest- 
ed, and the rear-guard reached camp at 12-30 a.m. Some help 
Avas given by Khidder Khels, who brought water for the 
wounded during the retreat ; and Avho, during the following 
two days, brought in the bodies of all killed. 

In frontier warfare no respect is paid by our foes to the 
dead. The bodies so brought in had been horribly mutilated, 
irrespective of their religion. 

Of tUe British Officers who so nobly stuck to their posts, 
Colonel Bupny and Captain Browne, R.A., died of their 
wounds on the road, and their bodies, with that of Lieutenant 
Oruikshank, R.A., and all the wounded, were brought in with 
the retirement. Captain Browne's life would in all probability 
have been saved had a tourniquet been applied to the severed 
artery, but medical assistance was not available as Surgeon- 
Captain Cassidy was hors de comhat. Both Lieutenant Higgin- 
sou and Surgeon Captain Cassidy afterwards died, the latter 
from the effects of his wounds, and the former from enteric 
fever when convalescent from his injuries on the field. 



15 

Total Caslalties. 
3 British Oiflceia killed. 
3 „ „ wounded. 

Ntttive rauVs killed— I Subadar and 7 men of the 1st Puojwb Infanfiy 
12 men and a k&har of 1st Sikhs. 
1 Havildarand 1 driver No. 6 Bombay Mountain Battery. 

It is a sigaificanfc fact that of the above total 17 were 
Sikhs, though the force was composed of nearly an equal 
number of Sikhs and Mussalmanj:. 

Woauded — 1st Puiijab lufautry, 2 men sevei'ely, 2 inua sligi:i;y. 

21st Puujub Cavuiry, 1 sowar sb'ghtly. ■ 

1st Sikhs, 12 men severely. 

1 mule driver dangei'ously. 

8 men slightly. 

No. 6 Boinbuy iloautuiu Battery, 2 men severely. 

1 man slightly. 

1 Kahar slightly. 

Several mules and horses vi'ere also killed and wounded. 

The news reached Lieutenant Colonel W. duGrej, com- 
mandijjg the Tochi Valley tro 'p?, Miran Sliah, at 11 P. si. on the 
lOtb, and he arrived at Daita Kiicl, with Surgeon-Captain F.R. 
Ozzard, at y A.M. the next inoiijiii^-. 

The first matter for consideration was the recovery o£ 
the dead left on the Geld, and the Governmeat and private 
property. Lieutenant-Colonel Grey reported that Colonel 
Bunny and Captain Browne, ti.A., continued to cany on 
theii- duties after being mortally wounded, eind this they 
continued to do until the near approach of death stupped 
them, and that Subadar Sundai- Singh, 1st Punjab Infantry, 
was killed while fighting in the most gallant and self- 
sacrificing manner. The behaviour of Lieutenants Seton- 
Browne and Higginson, in leading their mep and, after the 
death of theii- seniors, conducting the retreat, though themselves 
severely wounded, is woithy of high praise. The behavioui' vt 
the whole force tLioughoiitWas fplendid. 




\6 
CHAPTER III. 

NOBLE CONDUCT OP OUR SEPOYS. 

first news of this deplorable disaster, recalling 
in so many particulars the Wano affair, created a 
great impression in India and information Tvas anx- 
iously awaited and greedily devoured. It had pre- 
viously been thought. that the laws of hospitali- 
ty which are treated with so much respect by Pathans, 
would have absolutely prohibited such black treachery. Sur- 
prise was also expressed that so large an escort should have 
been attacked by a large force without any previous knowledge 
of such intention. But as was proved at Wane 5,000 or 6,000 
tribesmen can assemble so quickly, and their movements are 
made so secretly, that their presence is first announced by a 
rush of swordsmen on our pickets. Waziri tactics are based on 
surprise, and valleys which were empty of men in the morning 
may swarm with thousands after nightfall. 

At first there was much murmuring in some quarters, and 
in Calcutta it was suggested that the escort had been utterly 
demoralised and that something like a smove qui peut had 
followed. Never were brave men more shamefully maligned. 
As fuller details of the affair were published in the press, 
it was clearly seen that in the face of ammunition failure and 
vastly outnumbered on all sides our native troops conducted 
themselves in a manner worthy the glorious traditions of 
our Indian army. With bullets raining upon them and with 
their British commanders all hors de combat, the retirement 
was carried out in the most orderly and admirable fashion. 
The Muhammedan and Sikh sepoys, literally covered themselves 
with glory, and by their determination, discipline and bravery 
alone, saved the entire force from annihilation. 

The remarks of Colonel Grey on this matter are worth 
reproducing here : — 

" After the two Uoyal Artillery oflBcers had fallen, that is 
almost immediately after the attack began, the gunners con- 
tinued to fire under the oi-ders of tlieir non-commissioned officers, 
Vintil their ammunition was expended ; in No. 3 Sob-division 
firing blank by the Havildar's orders when the shells were 



17 

expended until the mules were ready. Tie men solving this 
gun were— Havildar Nihal Singh, Naick Utam Chand, Gunners 
Jowala Singh, Chet Singh and Diwan Singh (II). The car- 
riage tnule l)eing wounded Havildar Nihal Singh, Naick Utam 
Chand and Gunner Jowala Singh carried the gun-carriage to the 
relief line (about 170 yards). Gunner Chet Singh was wounded 
in the face when limbering up, and was taken away by Gunner 
Diwan Singh (II). In No. 4 Sub-division, although the gun 
twice turned over backwards, and two lanyards broke, the men 
continued to fight their gun. They were — Naick Sharaf Ali, 
Lance Naick Phulla Khan, Gunner Dulla Khan and Havildar 
Umar Din (killed). The gun-mule in this Sub-division was 
wounded just after being limbered up and threw the gun and 
bolted. The ^un was then carried away by Havildar-Major 
Muhammed Ismail, Gunner Dulla Khan and Gunner Lakhu as 
far as the relief line. Driver Havildar Rudh Singh gave great 
help in sending back the wounded, and Salutri Kevval dressed 
Captain Browne's wound under fire. The drivers all behaved 
excellently, even loading up the great-coats on the relief line 
mules until ordered by Captain Browne to desist. Those Avhose 
mules were shot or broke away all helped other drivers or took 
their share in carrying the wounded. The Havildar-Major 
seems to have conducted the retirement of the section in a cool 
and able manner. During this first withdrawal Lance-Naick 
Shah Sowar, 1st Sikhs, behaved with much gallantry, keeping 
the enemy off with his fire, while he accompanied and helped 
those carrying Captain Browne, Royal Artillery (who had been 
wounded)." 

It is to be remembered that the guns, while being fought 
as above described, were at a distance of only 100 yards from 
a threatening enemy, and were under a converging fire from 
different sides. The stand made at the garden corner has already 
been described. This was under the direction of Sutadar Sandar 
Singh, 1st Punjab Infantry, and Narain Singh, 1st Sikhs. 
The latter officer, also, with great presence of mind, removed 
a large quantity of ammunition from the reserve ammunition 
boxes of his regiment, and rapidly distributed it. Some was 
also carried away by Bugler Bela Singh, 1st Punjab Infantry. 
The value of this ammunition to the force cannot be over-esti- 
mated ; had it not been rescued, it is difficult to think how 
the enemy could have been kept off at all. The following 
men had been sent under heavy fire to fetch away the ammuni- 
tion boxes by Subadar Narain Singh : — Naick Lachman Singh, 



18 

1st Sikhs ; Sepoy Shiv Singh, Ist Sikhs, who went back twice, 
and was afterwards twice wounded ; Sepoy Isar Singh, 1st 
Sikhs ; Lance- Naick Atar Singh, 1st Sikhs (killed;, and 
Langri Jhanda Singh, 1st Sikhs. • 

The conduct of Subadar Sundar Singh, 1st Punjab In- 
fantry, at the place where he died, was most heroic. At this 
place many other men also behaved with great heroism. AH 
those who fell there gave their lives to cover the withdrawal 
of their comrades. Among the survivors Lance-Naick Ishar 
Singh, 1st Punjab Infantry, fought the enemy hand to hand 
very gallantly there, killing several with his bayonet, and 
generally rendering great help ; and Bugler Bela Singh, Ist 
Punjab Infantry, who has been mentioned above, was again 
conspicuoKR, fighting bravely and effectively -with a rifle h'e 
saved from one of the killed, and later in distributing under 
fire the ammunition which had been saved. During the first 
withdra\N-al to the kotal, Jemadar Sherzad, 1st Sikhs, carried 
Lieutenant Higginson, when wounded, away under a very heavy 
fire. A little later, taking a rifle and amniunition from a dead 
sepoy, he covered the retreat of a party (consisting of Havildar 
Muhamrnhd Bakhsh, Naick, Khwaja Muhammad and Sepoy 
Isar Singh, 1st Sikhs), who were carrying Surgeon-Captain 
Cassidy, wounded, to the rear. He also carried Surgeon-Captain 
Cassidy part of the way. Sepoy Allahyar Khan, 1st Punjab In- 
fantry, carried Lieutenant Seton-Browne, wounded, toihekoial. 

Subadar Nawab Khan, 1st Sikhs, was one of the last toleave 
the scene of the outrage, and both there and throughout the 
subsequent retirement, he worked in a very cool and admirable 
way. During the general retirement from the kotal towards 
the place where the reinforcements were met, the ability and 
coolness of Subadar Narain Singh, 1st Sikhs, mentioned above, 
were of the greatest value. Lance-Naick Assa Singh, 1st 
Punjab Infantry, did good work in helping Lieutenant Seton- 
Browne along when the enemy was pressing the retreat. Sepoy 
il^urdad, 1st Punjab Infantry, repulsed an attack of a 
party of the enemy. After shooting down two at a very short 
distance, he led a successful counter-charge agai^ast thejp, bein^ 
himself severely wounded. Reference was made in tlie pre- 
vious report to the most gallant conduct of the deceased o|5- 
cers — Colonel Bunny, Captain Browne, R. A., and Subadar 
Sundar Singh. At the time it was written, I was not aware that 



19 

Lieutenant Cruikshank, R. A., had also behaved in a most cou- 
spicaous manner getting up and continuing to fight his gun^s, 
after being once shot down, until he was killed by another bullet. 
Later on in a special despatch mention was made of the bravery 
of Lieutenant H. S. DeBrett, No. 6 Mountain Battery. 

The sudden and treacherous way in which, the attack 
began, and the fact that at the very first the men saw 
all their British oflBcers shot down, makes the staunchness 
and gallantry of the native officers, non-commissioned officers 
and men even more praiseworthy than they might otherwise 
have been. The indomitable spirit of No. 6 Bombay Mountain 
Battery is beyond all praise. The conspicuous behaviour of 
Lieutenants Higginson and Seton-Browne in conducting the 
retirement, while severely wounded, has been mentioned be- 
fore. " I trust the General Officer Commanding may see fit to 
recommend these two British officers and all native officers, 
non-commissioned officers and men mentioned by name above 
for a signal reward for their gallantry And I would also ask 
permission to submit a list of those killed at the garden wall 
with a view to the recognition of their splendid conduct being 
extended to their widows or heirs." 

When the previous report was writteh the casualties were 
under-stated. They were as follows : Total : killed 26, and 11 
horses and mules. Wounded 35, and 5 mules. Also 24 
baggage mules missing. Though it was not his business, adds 
Colonel Grey, to report on civil officers, it would be unjust to 
omit mentioning that Mr. Gee's exertion and presence of mind 
were of great value in the help he rendered during the 
retirement and in sending to call up reinforcements. 



CHAPTER IV. • 

EXPLANATIONS OF THE MAIZAR DISASTER. 

M MEDIATELY all sorts of causes were put for- 
ward to account for the treacherous affair, and 
the one most generally accepted was that it was 
the work of Mullahs: those frontier fanatics who 
giye SO macli trouble to oar of^cers. The attack a]so 



20 

took place daring the Muharram, the great religions festival 
of the Mahammadans to celebrate the deaths of their 
martyrs, Hassan and Hussain, and when any act of religions 
fanaticism or martyrdom is considered specially meritorious. 
The fact that theMadda Khelsare Sunis, who do not, as a rule 
take note of the Muharram discounted somewhat this view. 
Whether the Madda Khel were to any great extent influenced 
by fanaticism other than that due to the constant preaching 
of their Mullahs, cannot be said, but there is ample evi- 
dence to show that the whole business was carefully planned 
beforehand, and that the headmen were parties to the treacher- 
ous attack on Colonel Bunny's party. The tribesmen doubt- 
less believed that if they could kill the Britisli officers at once 
the sepoys would be demoralised, and they could be cut off to 
a man. Success would mean the capture of two mountain 
guns, 303 rifles and a large quantity of ammunition, not to 
mention the baggage animals and camp equipage. The pro- 
spect of loot of this kind would alone be sufficient to stimulata 
the ferocity of Pathans ; and probably the wires were pulled 
by men who knew when the Political Officer meant to visit 
Maizar, what the strength of his escort would be, and the pro- 
bable time of its arrival at the village. It was the heroism and 
faithfulness alone of our soldiers which prevented such a dire 
calamity as the loss of guns and rifles would have been, to say 
nothing of the wholesale massacre which would have followed. 

The report of the Political Officer, Mr. Gee, (who was the 
only European to escape unhurt) is interesting as showing 
purely local causes for the outbreak. He says that he purposely 
took a large escort as he deemed it would have a good 
effect, especially in view of the fact that an early commence- 
ment was to be made on the building of a levy post. The two 
Maliks, Sadda Khan and Alambe, who, as we now knowt, 
played the part of, traitors, were sent a day in advance to 
make preparations for the visit of the force and assemble the 
local headmen to discuss the distribution of the fine that had to 
be levied. Sadda Khan selected a camping-ground which 
Colonel Bunny accepted. Mr. Gee adds : . " The people in the 
villages round appeared friendly and talked freely with the 
Pathan sepoys. Every thing required in the way of grass and 
wood had been supplied, and about midday the food which 
Lad been cooked in one of the Maizar kots was brought down 
for the sepoys and a special point was made of the British 



21 

officers partaking of some of It. I then made inquiries as to 
whether the localyYrg'a, which had been sitting under some 
trees near for some time, were ready to come and see me, and 
I was told by Ghulam Muhammad, Assistant Political, that 
they had come to an amicable agreement by themselves, and 
all that was necessary was that they should come up later to 
make a formal statement before me. This was what Sadda 
Khan had led Ghulam Muhammad to believe, but if the evi- 
dence available is to be trusted Sadda Khan's statement was 
a deliberate lie, for at that very time the Maizarwals had re- 
fused, as they had the day before, to be bound by his propo- 
sals, and must have been preparing for the outbreak. Had 
Sadda Khan given us the slightest information .of this attitude 
on the part of the Maizarwals — which he, as well as other 
Madda Khel Maliks, who had been there all day, must have 
been perfectly well aware of — there would have been plenty of 
time to prepare for an attack." Further on in the report 
it is stated that Ghulam Muhammad, who escaped with a 
small party to the other side of the Tochi river, sent Sadda 
Khan to Sheranna to keep the jDcople quiet there. The Malik 
returned in two hours saying he had dispersed the tribal force 
and the road was clear. Nothing could have been further 
from the truth, for the Sherana people joined in the fight and 
the village was shelled. Mr. Gee's narrative made it quite 
clear that Sadda Khan was cognisant of the whole business. 

Although the losses on our side were so heavy they do not 
nearly compare with the numbers of the Waziris who were 
killed. The fire of our soldiers must have been wonderfully 
steady and accurate as no less than one hundred of the enemy, 
including four Mullahs and one Malik, were killed outright, 
whilst a great many more were wounded. 

The published details of the Maizar affair were followed by 
a host of criticism. Correspondents wrote as if the Political 
Officer and the military officers with him at Maizar were 
imbeciles to have trusted the Madda Khel at all. Yet 
Colonel Bunny was an officer intimately acquainted with 
the Pathan character, thoroughly experienced in the 
manners and customs of frontier tribesmen, and generally 
cautious in his dealing with the tribesmen: but he must 
have been deceived by Sadda Khan's hospitality. He 
neglected none of the precautions usually taken when a 



fimall force is sent to support the authority of the Political 
Officer. Picquets and sentries were posted, the sepoys were 
not allowed to pile arms but carried their rifles about with 
them, and there was no slackness in the general arrangements 
of the camp. The ground certainly was not well suited for 
camping upon, but Maizar is on a hillside and its position is 
such that no commanding position can be taken up near 
it. If the people had shown signs of sullen resentment at the 
appearance of the troops it is possible that even greater pre- 
cautions would have been adopted ; but from the apparently 
frank submission, coupled with the friendly conduct of the 
village headmen in offering hospitality, there was nothing to 
lead to the suspicion that treachery was intended. The 
Political Officer had not been molested in his ride of four or 
five miles to Dotoi, though he had only a few sowars with 
him and he could easily have been waylaid ; the British officers 
and all Mahomedan sepoys were entertained as gaests of the 
village, and even to Colonel Bunny's experienced eye no 
signs of an attack were Visible. 

It was thought that there had been treachery on the part 
of the Pathan sepoys in the escort, but there was no evidence 
whatever to justify aspersions of that kind being made. Sus- 
picion always naturally goes to our Pathan soldiers in the 
event of any untoward event on the Frontier, but in this case 
it must not be forgotten that, although the majority of the 
sepoys who fell were Sikhs, several Pathans also were killed, 
and when their bodies were recovered it was found that the 
tribesmen had mutilated alike the Sikh and the Pathan. 

In some quarters it was suggested that patriotism pure and 
simple had inspired the tribesmen to attack the escort, but it 
is difficult to realise the occasion for such hostility. The 
country has always, although within the sphere of our political 
influence, been treated with conspicuous leaiency. 

Under the treaty with the Amir of Kabul, the demarcation 
of the Indo-Afghan position was a necessity, unless the old un- 
satisfactory state of things was to remain, under which relations 
with Abdur Rahman were constantly being strained almost 
to breaking point. The Waziris particularly had to be shown 
that they must abandon their predatory habits. Even after 
the Mahsuds had attacked Wano, Waziristan was not perma- 
nently occupied. When Sir William Iiockhart's expediticm 



came toan end, only sncli posts were established to the north 
and south of ihe country as seemed fitted from their position 
to prevent raids upon the great caravan routes to Ghazni and to 
ensure some control over the most unruly of the clans. On the 
side of the Guraal the placing of detachments of troops at points 
where bands of raiders could be intercepted has been attended 
with a full measure of success. To the north the outposts in 
the Tochi Valley were so placed as to command the roads lead- 
ing into the heart of Waziristan, an alternative route to the 
chief villages, such as Kanioruram and Makin, being thus kept 
open. The Mahsuds seem to have recognised that they were 
in a cleft stick, and they have behaved uncommonly well — for 
Waziris — during the last two years, though now and again 
small bands have given trouble along the road from Bannu to 
Datta Khel. The headmen were content to be left to govern 
their own villages according to custom, and not even the 
re-appearance of Mullah Powindah caused unrest in Waziristan. 
It remained for a comparatively small section of the 
Darwesh Khel to break the peace at Maizar and to signalise 
its defiance of British authority by a piece of treachery un- 
equalled on the frontier, and perfidy in setting at nought the 
laws of hospitality of a sort revolting even to Afghan sentiment. 



CHAPTER V. 

A SUMMER CAMPAIGN IX THE TOCHI. 

F the forward policy controversy is brought to bear upon 
the Maizar disaster, it is quite open, of coarse, to argue 
that Government should not have taken over the Tochi 
Valley at all, but have left the Dawaris and Waziris to 
stew in their own juice, murdering and pillaging along 
the highway between Afghanistan and India, and being for 
all time a thorn in the side of the Government of India and 
the Amir of Kabul alike. The necessities of the situation, 
however, after the Maizar disaster were plain. 

The Government of India naturally resolved idmmiateely 
upon a punitive expedition into the Tochi country arnd arange- 
meats to this end went forward rapidly. It was early decided 



24 

that the force sbc/uld be a comparatively large one, as although 
no opposition was anticipated from either the Mahsuds or the 
Darwesh Khels, many of whom hold lands in British territory, 
it was felfc that the sending forward of a small force might 
inritc attack and give confidence to any clans who might be 
hesitating vv'hether they should join the malcontents in the 
Upper Tochi Valley. Events which have since occurred have 
shown the wisdom of this decision, as it has at least saved the 
Government from the reproach which most certainly would 
have been hurled at its head of having precipitated the 
subseqnent risings and, by taking half-hearted measures, in- 
cited other tribes to rebel, caused a general conflagration 
on our north-west frontier. 

In less than a vreek news was issued from Simla that the 
following was to compose the foice for the Tochi Valley puni- 
tive expedition : — 

1st Brigade. 
2nd Battalion, Argyll and Sutliex'laad Highlanders. 
Ist Eegiment of Sikh Infantry, Punjab Frontier Force. 
1st Regiment of Punjab Infantry, Punjab Frontier Force. 
38rd (Punjabi Muhamedan) Regiment of Bengal Infantry. 

1 Squadron, 1st Regiment of Punjab Cavalry, Punjab Frontier Force 
6 Guns, No. 3 (Peshawar) Mountaiti Battery, Punjab Frontier Force. ' 
No. 2 Company, Bengal Sappers and Miners. 

2 Sections., No. 2 British Field Hospital. 
No. 28 Native Field Hospital. 

2 Sections, No. 29 Native Field Hospital. 

2xD Brigade. 

3rd Battalion, The Rifle Brigade. 

14th (The Ferozepore Sikh) Kegimeut of Bengal Infantry. 

6th Regiment of Bengal (Light) Infantry. 

25th (Punjab) Regiment of Bengal Infantry, 

1 Squadron, 1st Regiment of Punjab Cavalry, Punjab Frontier Force, 
4 Guns, No. 6 (Bombay) Mountain Battery. 

2 Sections, No. 2 British Field Hospital. 
No. 30 Native Field Hospital. 

2 Sections, No. 29 Native Field Hospital. ' 



25 



C and D Sections, No. Si Native Field Hospital, were detailed for tke 
line of Communications, and Section, No. 1, Field Veterinary Hospital for 
the base. 

Commands axd Staff. 

The followinc: officers were detailed for the staff of the force : 
General Officer Commanding the Force Major-General G. Corrie Bird, c.F., 

Captain H. M. Twynara,- I.'ast 

Lancashire Eegimcnt. 

Captain S.W. Scrafe-Dickins, High. 

laud Lis:ht Infantry. 



Aide-de-Camp ... ... 

Orderly Officer ... ,., 

Assistant Adjulant-General ... 
Asi^istant Quart crmaster-Qeneral 



Major J. Willcocks, d.s.o., Leinster 
Hegiraent. 



Fijiid Commandant .., .,, 

Ease Commandant at Bannu 
Station St. f Officer, Bannu 



Brevet-Lieutenant-Colonel J. E. 
Nixon, 18th Eegiment of Bengal 
Lancers. 

Lieutenant Colonel D. S. Cunning- 
hame, 1st Punjab Caralry. 

Colonel W. J. Vcusden, V. C. 
Captain C. P. Scudamore, D. S. 0., 
Royal Scotts Fusiliers. 

}i(( II way Transport Officer, Kushalgarh Major H. H. Bunny, Gordon High- 
landers. 

Cnirr,-,uuidant British Troops, Bannu Captain F. D. Annesely, The Buffs. 

CGrtimannaht Kative Troops, Bannu Lieutenant H. G. Maxwell, 10th 

Bengal Cavalry. 

licp'ity A.<^istaT,t Quartcrmaster- 
General {IntAUgence) 

Field Intelligence Officer 



8'iperintendent, Army Signalling 
Principal Medical Officer ,,, 
Field Engineer ... ,„ 

Assistant Field Engineers ... 
Field Pnymoiter ,,, ,,, 

Ordnance Officer »^ „, 



Major G. V. Kemhall, S. A. 

Lieutenant G. K. Cockerill, ^Sth 
(Punjab) Regiment of Bengal 
Infantry. 

. Captain G. W. Rawlins, 12th Regi- 
ment of Bengal Cavalry. 

„ Surgeon-Colonel R. 11. Carew, d.s.o., 
Army Medical Staff. 

,, Major T. Digby, R. E. (replaced by 
Major H. F. Chesney, R. E.) 

r Captain A. L. Schreiber, R. E. 
.. < Lieutenant W. D. Waghorn, R. E. 

i. Lieutenant E. N. Stockloy, R. E. 

Captain P. G. Shewell, Military Ac- 
counts Department. 

„ Major C. H. L. F. WilsoD, E. K 



26 



Ohief Commissariat Officer 

Assistant to Chief Commissariat 
OSicer „• .« 



Divisional Transport Officer .,« 7»» 
Advance Depot Transport Officer ..» 

Assistant to Divisional Transport 
Offi-cer 

Inspecting Veterinary Officer »,. 



Survey Officer ««« 

Provost Marshal ..» 

Chaplain ... „ 
Commanding ... ,,» ,,, 

Orderly Officer , 

Depuif Assistant Adjutant-General 



Deputy Assistant Quao'termaster-GenC' 

ml '... 

Brigade Commissariat Officer 
Briaaf'e Transport OPjlccr ... ,,, 



Reyimenfal, Commissariat and Trans- 
port Officers 



Major G. Wingate, Aaaistant Cont- 
missary-General. 

Lieutenant J. L. Rose, 2nd Battalion 
let Gurkha (Eifle) Regiment 
(relieved in September by Lieute- 
nant J. H. Peck, 27th (1st 
Belnchistan Battalion) Bombay 
Light Infantry). 

Cajptain H. James, Assistant-Com- 
missary-General. 

Lieutenant E. M. J. Molyneux, 12th 
Bengal Cavalry. 

Lieutenant E.G. Haag, 18th Hussars. 

Veterinary-Major G. T. R. Eayment, 
Army Veterinary Department 
(afterwards succeeded by Veteri- 
nary Lieutenant C. B. M. Harris, 
Army Veterinary Department). 

^ „i Lieutenant F. W. Pirrie, Indian 

Staff Corps. 
•t ••• Captain P. Malcolm, 2nd Battalion, 

4th Gurkha (Rifle) Regiment. 

Rev. F. L. Montgomery. 

1st Brigade Staff. 

Colonel C. C. Egerton, c. B., D. S.O., 

A. D C, with the temporary 
rank of Brigadier-General. 

., ,,. Captain A. Grant, 2nd Battalioni 

4th Gurkha (Rifle) Regiment. 

Captain H. B. B. Watkis, 31st (Pun- 
jab) Regiment of Bengal Infantry. 



Brevet-Major F. Wintour, Royal 
West Kent Regiment. 

Lieutenant E. C. R. Annesley, 

Deputy Assistant Commissary 

General. 

Captain M. S. Welby, I3th Hussars 

fCaptain J. T. I. Bosanqnet, 2nd 

BattalioD, Border Regiment. 

Lieutenant T. S. Cox, 11th (Prince 

^ of AVales' Own) Regiment of 

Berin-al Lancers. 
I Lieutenant J. Muscroft, 2nd Batta- 
l^ lion, 1st Gurkha (Rifle) Regiment* 



27 



Veterinary Officer ... 

Assistant Superintendent, Army Sig- 
nalling 



Provoit Marshal ••• 



Veterinary Lientenant F. W. Hunt, 
Army Veterinary Department. 

Lieutenant P. D. McCanrilish, 
Argyll and Sutherland High- 
landers. 

Lieutenant A. II. Maclean, Argyll 
and Sutherland Highlanders. 



2nd Brigade Staff. 



Commanding,., ... ... ... Brigadier-General W. P. Symons, c.b. 

(afterwai'ds replaced by Colonel 
the Hon. M. Curzon, lUfle Brigade). 

Orderly Officer Captain A. G. Dallas, 16th Lancers. 

Deputy Assistant Adjutant-General Captain J. McX. Walter, Devon- 
shire Regiment. 
Deputy Assistant Quartermaster-Gene- 
ral 

Brigade Commissariat Officer 

Brigade Transport 0$cer 



Regimental, Commissariat 
Transport Officers 



Veterinary Officer 



Assistant Superintendent, 
Signalling ... 

Provost Marshal 



Major H. M. Grover, 2nd Regiment 
of Punjab Cavalry. 

Lieutetiaot E. A. R. Howell, Deputy 
Assistant Commissary-General. 

Captain P. W. D, Brockman, 5th 
Regiment of Bengal (Light) 
Infantry. 

f Lieutenant N. J. H. Powell, 23rd 

i (Punjab) Regiment of Bengal In- 
fantry (Pioneers). 
and J Lieutenant P. H. Cunningham, Ist 
... I Regiment of Bombay lufantry- 
(Grenadiers). 
Lieutenant G. E. Tuson, 16th Lan- 
l^ cers. 

Veterinary Lieutenant C. B. M. 
Harris, Army Veterinary Depart- 
ment. 
Army 



Lieutenant M. G. E. Bell, 3rd Bat- 
talion, Rifle Brigade. 

Lieutenant G. A. Beatty, Oth Bf-;iigal 
Lancers. 

As soon as the first excitement of the Maizar outrage 
wore away and the effective punitive force was nncler mobir 
lisation, pnblic interest in the Tochi Valley evaporated. There 
was no general disaffection apparent, later aeooTints -liowed 
that the outrage was committed as the result of a clever uitrigu& 



28 

of Sadda Khan and had little, if any, political significance/ 
whilst it was felt that the field force despatched under General 
Corrie Bird, beyond having to endure great heat and being 
worried by snipers at night, would have what is known as 
a " frontier picnic." In this opinion the public was un- 
doubtedly correct. 

Mr. Gee was appointed Chief Political Officer, and Mr. 
Lorimer and Mr. Kettlewell, as Assistant Politicals, were attach- 
ed to the two Brigades. Preparations were pushed forward with 
all speed, and early in J uly, Bannu and the road from Kushalgarh 
were crowded with officers, marching troops, field hospitals, 
commissariat stores, mules, camels, bullock carts, tongas 
and all the paraphernalia of war preparations. There was great 
jubilation in every quarter, and, despite the intense heat, 
all seemed to revel in the good fortune which had 
selected them for the front. If we are to believe the reports, 
the entire fighting force prayed incessantly that the Mullah 
Powinda— that frontier firebrand — would be inspired to help 
the Madda Khels, and so ensure that the troops should have 
what was termed " some fun " for all the grind and hard work 
they were putting in. In this respect their hopes were not to 
be realised and for them was reserved the unexciting role 
of politically parading on "do tread on the tail of my coat" 
principles while their comrades in arms on other parts of 
the tarbnlent frontier were engaged in sterner work. 

The first shot was fired from a village near Boya on July 
3rd, and the same day reports came into the camp atMiran Shah 
of an outrage committed on sarwans and camels. A party of 
sowars under Lieutenan<- E. "N". Stockley, R.E., and rifles under 
Lieuteuaiit \V. H. Climo, moved forward in pursuit, and after 
an exciting chase fifty-one armed men were captured and" 
brought into camp. Hopes of a big fight were now^ raised by 
the intelligence brought into camp that the Madda Khel and 
Mahsud Waziris had left their homes after sending their 
families and animals into safety, and were preparing to resist 
the Hritish advance. It was also added that the Amir had 
declined to receive the tribesmen into Afghanistan, which 
increased the chances of a conflict. At night there was the 
iisnal '• sniping " into camp, that irritating method of frontier 
warfare which does so much to try the patience of Tommy 
Atkins and Jack Sepoy. At Datta Khel a man crept within. 



29 

fifteen yards of the defences and shot a sentry, whilst at Idak 
the same thing occurred. On the 8th General Corrie Bird 
left Bannu and entered the Tochi Valley to assume full politi- 
cal control. The same night Datta Khel camp was disturbed 
by snipers. 

A slight spurt of excitement was given to affairs by 
the little conflict at Saidgi where some sepoys went for a 
party of Waziri levies with fixed bayonets, killing and wound- 
ing about seventeen. These levies are always troublesome, 
and it has long been the general opinion of every military 
officer, with the slightest experience, that they are invariably 
implicated in every robbery and crime that has taken 
place for years, notably on the occasion of the murder 
of the four sepoys of the 22nd Punjab Infantry in 189o. 
The following extract from a private letter received from 
a man on the spot, throws a side light on these levies 
which is of interest: — These friendly levies on whom the 
Politicals rest their faith are our chief enemies. They are the 
people who " snipe " our camps and attack our convoys, in 
order to keep up the excitemerit of the expedition, and to 
make the Politicals ojDen their bags of rupees in order to bribe 
them (the levies) into keeping the tribes quiet and communi- 
cations open. To-day we have heard that one man was shot 
and that he crawled into the civil camp, about 600 yards from 
our camp ; and it proves what the sepoys have long maintain- 
ed, namely, that the so-called friendly levies, have been 
the very people who have been doing the shooting : but it is 
kept very quiet, as the sepoys are terribly exasperated 
about it. 

It is to be hoped that the rough and ready lesson taught 
them by our sepoys in the Tochi Valley will be appreciated 
for the future. 

There was littleof interest from Tochi for some days. We 
heard with something of disappointment that no advance 
was expected to be made from Datta Khel until the 20th, 
■wliich it was thought would enable the Waziris to clear 
out with all their belongings. The intense heat played havoc 
with onr men on the march, the Argyll and Sutherlands 
having twenty-five struck down, of which number two died. 
The Highlanders also had to leave behind a large number of 
footsore men at Bannu, 



80 

On the 14th appeared the Proclamation of the General to the 
Tribes. It began oy reciting the treacherous attack of Madda 
Khels on the Political Officer's escort after receiving hospitality 
from them, and proclaimed that Government had ordered him 
to proceed to Maizar with a force sufficiently strong to hold its 
own against all comers and to compel obedience to Government 
orders. General Bird added that he intended to destroy all 
fortified Jcots in Maizar and Sheranna, whether resistance was 
shown or not, and that he would remain at Maizar as long as 
he and Government deemed it desirable. Subsequently he 
would announce the terms of punishment which Government 
would inflict on all responsible or who took part in the attack, 
with whom alone he would deal. All others were warned to 
live in peace with Government and refrain from obstruction to 
the force. Further unfriendly acts would be severely dealt 
"with. 

The illness of Mr. Gee about this time necessitated his leav- 
ing for England, the post of Chief Political Officer being given 
fo Major G. T. Younghusband, Deputy Commissioner of Bannu. 
An interesting little ceremony took place at Datta Khel when 
General Corrie Bird paraded the troops and distributed to 
three native officers of the 1st Sikhs and one non-commissioned 
officer of the 6th Mountain Battery, the order of merit granted 
to them for their conspicuous bravery at Maizar. This little 
public acknowledgment of heroism was enthusiastically received, 
and the good effect produced was heightened when the General 
went around and saw each sepoy present at the Maizar attack 
and congratulated him on his excellent conduct. 

Although all this time there had been no fighting our 
troops had shown indomitable pluck and courage in enduring 
privations and trials of a very severe character. Few have 
experienced such campaigning since the Mutiny, the last 
occasion on which Indian marching had to be done in the 
height of summer. The excessive heat under canvas after 
leaving Khusalghar was maddening, the thermometer register- 
ing 112° to 116° F. in the tents. At one camp there were 
37 cases of heat apoplexy, two dying, one the Regimental 
Sergeant-Major* and the other a private, named Cameron. 
The Sergeant-Major only got his warrant rank in May, and 
his loss was deeply felt in the regiment, where he was a general 
favourite : they buried him the same evening. The scene at 



31 

the hospital tents was deplorable. After these exhausting 
marches, however, the force reached Tochi, and were now 
installed about 4,700 feet above sea level, where the weather was 
pleasant and the nights cool, necessitating covering. Heavy 
rain every day, accompanied by severe gales, however, made 
life under canvas disagreeable. The troops were in the middle 
of a valley, the hills around bare and devoid of ves^etation, 
throwing out a nasty glare which was hurtful to the eyes ; 
smoked glasses having to be worn to protect the sight. All 
the ranges of hills in Waziristan are dull and uninteresting. 
Perhaps that was just as well as they afforded no protection to 
the Waziris, and their movements could be easily made out. 

Eventually all was ready for the actual operations to 
begin. The troops were to advance four miles and burn a 
village in Sheranna and destroy anything that came into their 
possession. It was reported that the tribes were gathering 
together, and intended making a stout resistance. Rumour 
had it that 12,000 men were in waiting a mile out of Sheranna 
to oppose all entrance to their village. " If that is the case," says 
a jubilant correspondent of the Civil and Military Gazette " we 
shall have some fun for our money ; the A. and S. Highlanders 
are the first to attack, and are in hopes of some sharp fight- 
ing." The assistant surgeons and medical officers showed 
themselves of true metal throughout the marching. One poor 
first class assistant-surgeon, named Traynor, was struck down 
, with heat apoplexy one camp out of Bannu. Another was 
compelled to remain at Kohat for treatment. 

On the 23rd JulyMaizar was reached, and the scene of the 
treacherous attack was retraced. A description of the scene as 
viewed six weeks after the disaster is interesting. The plain 
extends about a mile north and south, and Drepilari village, 
from where the first shots were fired, stands on the edge of a 
cliff above. There is a further strip of alluvial plain on the 
edge of the river. A collection of kois and villages encircle 
Drepilari from east to south. Colonel Bunny's little force 
was sitting almost on the edge of the cliff, within 30 yards of 
the southern boundary of Drepilari, when fire was opened on 
them. The guns fired back case shot, from where they were, 
into the crowds trying to rush them from the edge of the cliff 
some 50 yards off, and drove them back. Traces of cartridire 
paper T?ere lying about still, showing where the men opened out 



32 

rounds. The gallant stand made by Subadars Nai'ain Singh 
and Sundar Singh, the latter of whom was killed, was at the 
eastern edge of the village. Tbe party Avas fired at from. 
Drepilari and the villages to the south and south-east, but not 
from the hot immediately to the east of the village. This hot 
stands high and overlooks the fields, but was apparently occu- 
pied by women only, and no shots were fired from it. Avoiding 
this, for they did not know it was not occupied, the troops 
retired over a succession of hills and valleys with somewhat 
steep sides. It is a matter for wonder how the wounded were 
carried on and the fight kept up. Several instances of pluck 
and devotion were apparent : for example, they saw the 
places where the gunner, when the gun mule was killed, picked 
up and carried the gun bodily to a relief mule ; also where the 
party with Surgeon-Captain Cassidy took turns to carry that 
•gallant officer and to remain behind to fight, Surgeon-Captain 
Cassidy being a very heavy man. In searching the villages 
on July 23rd, plates and tumblers belonging to the battery were 
found in some houses ; also a bundle of official papers belonging 
to Mr. Gee, some fuzes, an ordnance saddle, and an interesting 
if melancholy relic — Colonel Bunny's riding whip, which was 
delivered over to the 1st Sikhs. 

The fortifications and towers of the village were shelled 
but the ordinary habitations were left untouched. All this 
time there w^as no enemy, and officers and men alike began to 
be despondent of any real fighting. There was the usual, 
sniping into camp, the telegraph wire was cut, and reports 
were brought in of small parties of tribesmen who constituted 
themselves free lances and looted and plundered in the Valley. 

This was the position on the 27th August, and all public 
interest in the Tochi Punitive Expedition had well nigh sub- 
sided when suddenly news came that the Malakand had been 
attacked and that a British force was besieged at Chakdara. 



CHAPTER VL 



A MAD FAKIR IN CHITRAL. 



N April 1895 theptirdah was lifted from the Swat Valley 
and since that time we have been congratulating 
ourselves on the remarkably peaceful results whicli 
followed the expedition and the new political re- 
lations which were established in that far-off coun- 
try. There had never been any real or determined opposi- 
tion to our occupation of the valley in the first instance. 
On only one occasion did the Swat is offer anything like 
resistance to our advance — and at the Malakand the reverse was 
of so convincing a character that it enabled the tribesmen to 
realize clearly that opposition to the British advance was the 
least wise course to adopt. When the campaign was at an end 
the willingness, even cordiality, with which the new condition 
of things was accepted by the people was generally commented 
upon. With that wonderful adaptability of disposition whicli 
is so characteristic of many of the border tribes, the Pathans 
of the Swat Valley returned to their fields as if no punitive 
expedition had just traversed their country, and indifferent to 
the fact that the political influence of the Sirkao- had been 
substituted for the anarchical state of things which previously 
existed. 

This peaceful submission and the smiling contentment 
which so soon ruled all over the valley undoubtedly dis- 
armed suspicion, and it was noticed with satisfaction that 
the security which British rule gave to the country and the 
improvements in roads and bridges which were carried oat 
had succeeded in bringing about a rapid development of the 
trade of Chitral, both int-ernal and external. Relations also 
between our British officers and soldiers and the Sv^atis Avere 
apparently of a most friendly character, and that there was do 
resentment ever shown against our. military occupation is 
clearly evidenced by the fact that last year when the annual 
reliefs were carried out not a single shot was fired throughout 
the entire valley. It might truly be said that in Lower Swat 
everything was absolutely peaceful. With regard to the 



34 

upper part of the country there was only one cause for unrest. 
To explain this it is necessary to refer to two of the leading 
characters in the Chitral Catopaign. 

The political amhitions of Umra Khan, the Chief of 
Jaudoul, and Muhammad Sharif Khan, the Khan of Dir, 
were perhaps the two most conspicuous features of the 
Chitral disturbance. When the star of Umra Khan was in 
the ascendant it necessitated the hurried departure into exile 
among- the Swatis of Muhammad Sharif Khan. The British 
expedition put an end for a time at least to the hopes of 
the Chief of Jandoul, and the Khan of Dir linking his 
fortunes with ours found himself in th'^. position, at the close of 
the campaign, of a border chieftain with the added prestige of 
being directly supported by the British Government. Since 
1885 it is alleged that Muhammad Sharif Khan has endeavoured 
to pursue an aggressive policy beyond Chakdara and among 
the people in the Talash Valley which has caused a feeling of 
unrest in Upper Swat. Beyond this- there was nothing 
apparent in the political condition of things which led to the 
least uneasiness, and nothing which could be brought forward 
as explanatory of the desperate struggle which broke out around 
Malakand Camp and Chakdara post towards the end of 
July. 

The only explanation in any way satisfactory whiclj 
has been brought forward is that which attributes it to 
mullahs, and particularly to one pestilent fellow known as 
the "mad fakir" who was known to have, with that Peter 
the Hermit like perseverance and assiduity which is charac- 
teristic of the frontier fanatic, liberally spread his doctrines of 
murder and rapine amongst the tribesmen. According to native 
report he is a native of Swat who travelled to Central Asia and 
eventually settled in Mazar-i- Sharif, the Amir's chief canton- 
ment in Afghan Turkistan. He is said to have lived there for 
ten years and then to have gone to Kabul. This summer, 
according to the same report, he visited Bajour, the Utman 
Khel country, and Buner, preaching the necessity of waging 
war against all enemies of the Faith. He is supposed to have 
been in league with Hajab-ud-din, the notorious mullah of 
Hadda, whose fanatical hostility to the British Governmen.t is 
well known. Whatever truth there may be in this story, ojie 
point is clear : the " mad fakir " appeared in Upper Swat in 



36 

Jnly and the fame of his preaching spread far and wide. He 
gradually worked his way down the valley, with a rabble of 
men and boys at his heels, and on July 26th he was at Landa- 
kai, within hail of Chakdara. On that day he took the final step 
wfiich brought about the rising. He claimed to be inspired 
to work miracles ; the Heavenly Hosts were, he said, on his 
side ; and he announced that with or without help from his 
listeners he would sweep our troops from Chakdara and the 
Malakand in eight days. His excited appeals to the fanaticism 
which exists in every Pathan were responded to in a manner 
little short of marvellous : his progress from Landakai to Thana 
and thence to Aladand, both villages in view of Chakdara post, 
must have been a triumphal one ; the villagers flew to arms ; 
our levies hastily retired, except such as joined his standard ; 
all the headmen, with one solitary exception, were carried 
away by the popular enthusiasm, and by nightfall a resolute 
body of tribesmen were on the move to attack the Malakand, 
while another party turned their attention to Chakdara. The 
mullah had roused the whole valley, and his standard after- 
wards became the rallying point for thousands of fighting-men 
from Upper Swat, Buaer, the Utman Khel country, and even 
more distant parts. 

This possible and probable explanation of the rising only 
added, however, to the difficulties of fully explaining the origin 
of the unprecedented outbreak. What was the lever which 
moved the " mad fakir." Was it fanaticism pure and simple? 
If not who was responsible for the laying of the train and 
for the preliminaries which ended in the convulsion around 
the British outposts ? These questions still remain un- 
answered. 

But to come to the dramatic story of the onslaught on 
Malakand and Chakdara, where for a full week the valour of 
British arms fought against untold odds and emerged victori- 
ous from a struggle as obstinate and determined aa onr 
frontier annals record. 



36 
THF STORY OF MALAKAND SIEGE. 

CHAPTER YII. 

THE DEADLY NIGHT ATTACK. 

NDIAN bazaar rumoars are always wonderfnl and rarely 
reliable, and on the heights of Malakand very little more 
credence is paid to the stories which percolate from this 
source than anywhere else throughout the Peninsula. 
Several days before the attack the Malakand Bazaar 
was full of strange rumours in which the " mad fakir " loomed 
largely. The native mind was impressed by the extraordinary 
stories, and the more improbable they were the wider was the 
degree of popularity extended to them. The " mad fakir '* 
was at Landakai, at which place he was popularly believed 
to have vast armies secreted in the hills, which at the proper 
moment would be launched forth against the Sirkar. Natives 
talked of nothing else for days in Malakand Bazaar but of the 
magnificent cavalry, artillery and infantry which were at the 
holy man's disposal, and no one ventured near the hill neigh- 
bourhood where this army lay concealed, strict orders to that 
effect having, it was stated, been issued by the fakir himself. 

Further stories stated that he was in possession of a 
species of widow's cruse from which he fed all his host. There 
is little doubt that by some trickery he managed to impose on 
many of his subsequent followers, for the tale was told and 
believed that the Malik of one of the villages sent him a gift 
of Rs. 59, which was returned with Rs. 50 more in addition, 
and the message that the fakir required no money, as God 
produced all his requirements. Among a people so credulous 
Buch stories were readily believed. Again he made assurances 
wherever he went that the English bullets would be turned to 
water, and that by the appearance of the new moon not a 
single individual of the Malakand garrison would remain. It 
is quite certain that Lower Swat knew nothing of the game in 
jbiand until the very evening of the attack, for the Swatis had 
been for months coming in to our officers of their ovvu free will 
and selling their arms. 

The little garrison laughed at these idle stories, and, all 
though in a newly occupied country, amongst the most fanatica- 
of people, not a man believed that they portended evil. 



37 

The eventful twenty-sixth of July was polo day with the 
officers and away went our men merrily for their usual game. 
On the way down some of the officers were passed by the Assist- 
ant Political Officer, Lieutenant A. B, Minchin, who was hurry- 
ing down in his tonga to get to the bottom of a report which he 
had just received that a tribal gathering was collecting at 
Thana or Aladand. Although this might be considered corro- 
boration more or less of the reports current in the bazaar 
it aroused no suspicion amongst the enthusiastic young officers 
and the game of polo was played with as much zest and 
energy as if it was being witnessed by admiring crowds at 
Lahore or Poena, There was absolutely nothing unusual in the 
demeanour of the villagers that afternoon ; the usual croups 
of Khar folk watched the game and the players rode up in 
pairs without noticing a single disturbing fact. Their suspi- 
cions were aroused only when returning to camp. It transpired 
afterwards that the polo cJioivkidar was told to hurry the 
ponies back from Khar, as there was to be an attack on Mala- 
kand that night. As the players crossed over the road to 
North Malakand, they passed Lieutenant F. A. Wynter, R. A. 
of the Mountain Battery, who told them that Lieutenant Minchin 
had sent in from Chakdarato say there was no doubt about some 
of the tribes being up, and that a body of about 600 or 700 had 
passed through Aladand at 7-30 p.m., marching towardsMalakand. 
Major H. A. Deane, Political Agent, in the afternoon informed 
Colonel W. H. Meiklejohn of the seriousness of the impending 
troubles, and advised the Brigade moving at once on Amandara 
Pass to prevent the fakir seizing it. At 7 p.m. orders were 
issued for the Moveable Column to march as follows to the 
Amandara Pass under Lieutenant-Colonel H. N. McRae (^dth 
Sikhs) ;— Four guns No. 8 Bombay Mountain Battery, Royal 
Artillery, and 45th Sikhs, to move at 12 midnight, 24th 
Punjab Infantry to follow in support at 4 A.M. 

The garrison of Malakand consisted of one squadron of the 
nth (Prince of Wales' Own) Bengal Lancers, No. 8 Mountain 
Battery, No. 5 Company Madras Sappers, the 24th and 31st 
Punjab Infantry, and the 45th (Rattray*s) Sikhs, or some- 
thing under 3,000 men. The troops at Ohakdara were tw,o 
strong companies of the 45th Sikhs nnder Lieutenant H. B. 
Rattray and Second Lieutenant J. L. Wheatley, and one squad- 
ron of the nth Bengal Lancers under Captain H. Wright, o? a 
iotal strength of about 300. Two other British officers were also 



38 

there, Captain D. Baker, 2ad Bombay Grenadiers, Transport 
Officer, and Lieutenant A. B. Minchin, 25th Panjab Infantry, 
Assistant Political Officer. Captain Baker, however, was at 
Malakand when the attack occarred. 

The idea was to anticipate the attack, which, it was pre- 
sumed, would be delivered just before dawn, generally the chosen 
time with our frontier enemies ; but subsequent events showed 
how entirely novel their tactics were to be. All were now 
busy preparing for the move out, and by the time orders had 
been issued it was nine o'clock; dinner followed in due course, 
and just as all were getting up from it the " assembly "was heard 
sounding from the 4oth Sikhs' camp, and simultaneously firing 
commenced at Abbott's Road Picket and No. 10 Picket. It 
appears that a levy sowar riding up the road had seen large 
bodies collecting on the hills east of the camp, and galloped in 
to report. It was not a moment too soon ; a party of the 45th 
Sikhs, under Major W. W. Taylor, with Lieutenant R. M. Barff 
hurried forward to the defile on the Buddhist Road, just in time 
to meet a mass of several hundred Pathans creeping silently up 
the road. In another few minutes they would have been in the 
camp. The fighting here was very heavy ; poor Taylor being 
mortally wounded. Lieutenant-Colonel McRae with thirty men 
followed quickly after Major Taylor, and together they met 
the hundreds of the enemy in the gorge where the road reaches 
the top of the pass. Rocks were rolled down on the little 
band and a heavy fire kept up, but our men held to their posts 
nobly, and eventually when the remainder of the regiment 
came up, they only retired about fifty yards, where they 
remained defying the enemy all night. The 45th had a hard 
night of it, and lost several killed and wounded. The enemy, 
however, must have suffered heavily here. Meanwhile matters 
were getting most serious in the centreof the camp ; Abbott's 
Road and No. 10 Pickets were reinforced by a company of the 
24th Punjab Infantry, but were overpowered by rapidly increas- 
ing numbers and forced to retire ; the serai and bazar being 
very soon overrun with swordsmen. There is no doubt that 
the gallant resistance shown by this small party in the nar- 
row gorge against vastly superior numbers saved the camp 
from being rushed on that side. 

Another company of the 24th Punjab Infantry cleared the 
football ground up to the bazar wall, bayoneting several of the 



39 

enemy, and firing into masses of them inside the bazar from 
the cover of this wall ; but this company very soon had to leaf© 
its position, for another company manned the hospital enclo- 
sure, 100 yards behind the bazar wall, while the Sappers man- 
ned the north wall of this camp, thus making the presence of 
this company useless where they were ; they accordingly 
were brought into the Sappers' and Miners' enclosure. Outsit 
this were Colonel Meiklejohn, Major Herbert, Lieutenants F. W. 
Watling and B. N. Manley, R. E., Colonel J. Lamb, Captain H. F. 
Holland, Lieutenants S. H. Climo, A. K. Rawlins, and S. Morton, 
2'l;th Punjab Infantry. Firing was heavy and incessant all round 
the enclosure, and it transpired that numbers of the enemy had 
crept up the graded road to Damodur Das's shop, and thence at- 
tacked the south side and Quarter Guard, Sappers and Miners, 
and overran the Commissariat godown. Lieutenant L. Manley, 
of the Commissariat Department, must have been killed at the 
very outset ; Sergeant Harrington, of the Ordnance Department, 
had a most miraculous escape in the hut where Lieutenant Manley 
was cut up. He reported that some 30 or 40 crowded into the 
hut, Lieutenant Manley opening fire on them, the lamp being 
knocked over, and poor Manley settled with at once. In thfe 
darkness they overlooked Sergeant Harrington, although fob 
several hours they were moving about the hut; eventually, 
when the Quarter Guard of the Sappers and Miners was re- 
taken he heard friendly voices and made his escape. 

To return to the bazar corner of the Sappers' and Minera* 
enclosure. The firing very soon gave the enemy's sharpshooters; 
posted on the graded road, the range, whence from the cover of 
the parapet walls they maintained a steady and well-aimed fire 
on our men ; in the first ten minutes Major Herbert was wounded 
in the calf, the bullet first passing through Colonel Meikl^- 
john's gaiter ; the company of 24th Punjab Infantry holding 
the corner close to the bazar were kept busy repelling the 
attempt of the enemy to break through the defences. Under 
cover of the shopkeepers' tents they collected from time to time 
in numbers, charging up most determinedly ; their losses here 
must have been very heavy, for 30 of their bodies were 
found in the morning, and it is probable that during the hoai* 
before dawn, when the attack slackened off, they were occupied 
in carrying ofi their dead and wounded. A collecting stfttioa 
for wounded was formed near this corner ia a spot fairl) well 
safe from the enemy's fire. It was here, while Colonel I^amb 



40 

was asking after Major Herbert, that he received a very dan- 
gerous wound in the thigh, the bullet entering the bone; and 
almost at ou(te Lieutenant Watling was carried in with a bad 
sword cat wound severing the tendon just above the ankle ; he, 
however, succeeded in returning his assailant measure for mea- 
sure, running bis sword through and leaving it in his body. 

Lieutenant Watling reported that the enemy in large num- 
bers had overcome the Quarter Guard and had even penetrated 
some way within the camp, thus threatening the rear ; and even 
more serious still that they were carrying off the Company's 
reserve ammunition. 

Colonel Meiklejohn at once ordered a party of the 24th 
Punjab Infantry to accompany him to this quarter : few men 
could be spared from their posts, and the iirst lot to hand 
reached the cook-house about 80 yards from the Quarter Guard. 
Their party consisted of Colonel Meiklejohn, Captain Holland, 
Lieutenant Climo, Lieutenant Manley, Colonel Meiklejohn's 
orderly, a sepoy of the 45th Sikhs, two or three Sappers of No. 
5 Company, Madras Sappers and Minors, and two or three non- 
commissioned officers and sepoys of the 24th Punjab Infantry. 
At the cook-house we were met by ?*, number of the enemy, who 
were hidden inside, and behind the trees, and in the tents ; in 
this first sally Colonel Meiklejohn's orderly was shot dead, one 
of the Sappers wounded, and a lance-havildar, of the 24th 
Punjab Infantry, wounded in two places : the enemy had abso- 
lutely (jharged up to the point of the officers' revolvers, and 
most of the pistol shots must have told. Colonel Meiklejohn 
had again here a nari^ow escape ; a sword cut was aimed at his 
neck, but fortunately it was not delivered true, and the officer 
commanding escaped with a bruise. Our men were forced back 
from here owing to their revolvers being empty and the decrease 
of their numbers : ten yards farther a stand was made but here 
they were flanked by a large tree on the left, and unfortunately 
the doorway of an E. -P. tent on the ight; Lieutenant Manley 
^^as sent off for reinforcements, and v»'hile away Capfain 
Holland was shot through the back from the doorway of tlie 
t|nt, and another Sapper wounded ; this reduced the party to 
about half its original number, there being not more than 
seven or eight left. Captu,in Holland had an escape 
indeed, he was shot sideways, the bullet entering and coming 
out on one side of the spine, and then doing likewise on the 



41 

other side, making four Loles in its course ; he was taken back 
to the collecting station by Lieutenant Climo, who returned 
\yith 10 or 12 Dogras of the 24tli Punjab Infantry, and at the 
third attempt they were successful in reaching the Quarter 
Guard. Here they found all the ammunition had been carried 
off ; a bad business as ammunition was becoming a serious 
question. They now occupied themselves in clearing the Com- 
missariat lines and putting up defences to the south entrance of 
the enclosure, and destroyed the cook-houses which were close 
against the hedge on this side. 

At 1-30 A.M. Colonel Lamb sent Lieutenant Rawlins to 
Colonel Meiklejohn to propose the advisability of obtaining 
reinforcements from the fort ; on his way over the ground to 
the Quarter Guard, Lieutenant Rawlins had a very narrow 
escape ; a Gliazi crawling along on his stomach jumped up al- 
most under his feet, and struck at him. Fortunately he was 
somewhat out of practice and caught Lieutenant Rawlins with 
the back of the sword on the wrist, two revolver bullets 
promptly despatching him to the eternal glory that presumably 
all our enemies of the evening had gone in quest of. Lieute- 
nant Rawlins reached the fort safely, a perilous journey, as the 
road lay by way of the Commissariat godown and Sappers* 
Mess. Waiting for these reinforcements was weary and anxious 
work, for it seemed probable that the enemy would make a great 
effort before dawn ; in this surmise they were wrong, for quite 
contrary to their custom they drew off about 3-30 a. m., evidently 
for the purpose of clearing off their dead and wounded, while it 
was still dark : their firing, however, was not relaxed until 4-35 
A. M., when their sharpshooters retired to the heights, about 
800 yards from the centre of the camp. 




CHAPTER VIIL 



FOLLOWING UP THE ENEMY. 



S soon as there was suflncient light to pick our way 
with comfort. Colonel Meiklejoha ordered two 
companies, 24th Punjab Infantry, to clear the 
bazar ; this was done without casualty, the whole 
place being found clear with the exception of 
one or two Ghazis, who had not made good their retreat. 



42 

The bazar was a wpf nl scene of havoc, everything of vahie 
and easy of removal liaving been carried off, and several of the 
shopkeepers cut np. The Bazar Chowdri himself had quite a 
miraculons escape, as on hearing friendly voices he stepped out 
of a tent unharmed : he had remained in hiding in the back part 
of this tent all night and had escaped the garrison's heavy fire, 
which was for hours directed on the bazar, as well as the cold 
steel of the enemy's swordsmen. His experiences must indeed 
have been terrible. 

During this memorable night two conspicuous instances of 
valour occurred in and near the Sappers' lines. During the 
sortie to the Sappers and Miners Quarter Guard, when Colonel 
Meiklejohn's orderly was shot dead, in falling back to the next 
stand, the body was left behind. Lance-Naick Sewan Singh, of 
the 24th Punjab Infantry, rushed forward alone and carried 
the body back. At the time our men, of course, could not tell 
whether the man was killed or only wounded. The act was 
done under the most perilous conditions ; practically surrounded 
as they were with swordsmen, assisted by men armed with 
breech-loading rifles. The second instance occurred in the 
rescue of a wounded havildar of the 24tb Punjab Infantry. 
This man was wounded at the outset with the company which 
first manned the bazar wall ; but in the dark his absence was 
not noticed. At about 1 p.m., during a lull in the firing, the 
company in the hospital enclosure heard his cries for help ; 
Lieutenant E. W. Costello, 24th Punjab Infantry, taking two 
sepoys with him advanced to the middle of the football ground 
and carried in their wounded comrade ; this deed was indeed a 
gallant one, carried out as it was when the football ground was 
overrun with the enemy's swordsmen, and also raked by our 
own fire. The enemy had left this havildar for dead, having 
cut him in two or three places in addition to his original wound 
a severe bullet wound in the shoulder. 

Colonel Meiklejohn defermined the first thing in the 
morning to follow up the enemy. Orders were accordingly 
issued for the 31st Punjab Infantry with 4 guns, No. 8 Bombay 
Mountain Batterj'', Royal Artillery, supported by the 24th Pun- 
jab Infantry, to reconnoitre towards Chakdara and get through 
if posible; a weak squadron, 11th Bengal Lancers, under 
Captain H. Wright accompanied this force, and got through 
to Chakdara safely ; the infantry and guns, however, could not 



43 

get further than Bedford's Hill, opposite Khar, and were 
therefore recalled. The enemy on the right of the road occu-. 
pied the heights all the way along, and amused themselves by 
sniping at the force at about 800 yards range, doing no damage 
however. From the junction of the North Malakand and 
graded roads, the 24th Punjab Infantry covered the movement 
of the rest of the force to North Malakand ; on the completion 
of which the Officer Commanding Brigade sent orders for the 
24th Punjab Infantry to return to Malakand by the graded 
road. The command of this regiment, owing to Colonel Lamb 
and Captain Holland being both wounded, had now devolved on 
Lieutenant Climo. The regiment moving with a flank guard 
on the Buddhist road was fired on by the enemy crowning 
the heights above, and some of their standards came down to 
within 300 yards of the flank guard, which was at once turned 
to the enemy, and became an attacking line, reinforced by 
further companies. A turning movement by one company 
ascending to the highest point on the right, caught the enemy, 
and they retired leaving several dead, one standard being 
captured. Orders were now issued for the evacuation of 
North Malakand, and all available transport was engaged 
in removing stores from there to the fort for the remainder 
of the day. This was very wise, as by nightfall the enemy 
had concentrated in greater numbers than ever, and in addition 
the hills on the west were crowded with Utman Khels, &c., 
thus providing us with a much more extended line to defend. 

The movement of the North Malakand troops, 6 guns 
No. 8 Bombay Mountain Battery, Royal Artillerj', Guides 
Cavalry, and 31st Punjab Infantry (one squadron, llth Ben 
gal Lancers got through to Chakdara where it remained- 
throughout the siege), was completed by 6 p.m. The Guides 
Cavalry, despite the intense heat, made a splendid march from 
Mardan, being in camp at Malakand in eight hours from receipt 
of Colonel Meiklejhon's telegram calling them to the relief. 
They accompanied the remainder of the garrison to the kotal 
The force now in the kotal was as follows : 24th Punjab In- 
fantry, 6 Companies 45th Sikhs, Guides Cavalry, No. 5 Com- 
pany Queen's Own Sappers and Miners, No. 8 Bengal Moun- 
tain Battery. The enemy, who had been collecting on the 
western hills all day, came down at 5 p.m., and harassed the 
flank guard of the 31st Punjab Infantry, killing one of their 
number; at the same time overpowering No. 2 picket, 24th 



44 

Punjab Infantry, who were forced to retire. Two guns, No. 8 
Mountain Battery Royal Artillery had just arrived to the 
support of the west of the camp, and, ably assisted by them, 
two companies of the 24th Punjab Infantry retook the hill 
at the point of the bayonet, killing nine of the enemy and 
capturing a standard. Tbe hill was then occupied by the 
24th Punjab Infantry during the night. The enemy in their 
flight down the hill were badly knocked about, some of them 
running from their hiding places at such close quarters 
that the officers were enabled to use their revolvers with great 
effect. 

From the right the following were the positions of the 
troops on the night of the 27th July : — From Gretna Green 
along the Buddhist Road up to No. 8 picket, the 45th Sikhs, 
supported by portions of the 24th Punjab Infantry from Fort 
Malakand ; Sappers' and Miners' lines were manned by No. 5 
Company Sappers and Miners, and the 31st Punjab Infantry, 
the latter regiment holding the se7'ai with a detachment of 1 
non-commissioned officer and 25 men ; the Guides Cavalry 
held the Field Hospital enclosure and Commissariat lines ; the 
24th Punjab Infantry held Gibraltar Rock, the hill west of 
that again, and the water nullah. The fort was garrisoned by 
the remainder of the 24th Punjab Infantry, who also had a 
company at Maxim point. The enemy began their attentions 
early in the evening, emboldened no doubt by the evacuation of 
North Malakand; the sortie by the 24th Punjab Infantry, 
however, kept them oif till dark, when they returned in largely 
increased numbers from east, north and west. 



CHAPTER IX. 



ANOTHER FIGHT IN THE DARK. 



T was a curious sight before dark to see the enemy 
streaming in batches of 50 and 100 along the Chak- 
dara road with numbers of different coloured banners. 
But picturesque undoubtedly as the sight was 
it boded ill for the gallant defenders. Such large 
numbers meant an attack along the whole line, and ibis 



45 

as the previous night's business had shown, was deadly 
work. So far these hordes of the enemy were dressed 
chiefly in white, showing that the news had not yet leached 
Buner. In the same manner the hill tracks from the Utman 
Khel country could be discerned crowded with new comers. The 
preparations of the garrison were complete, and the disposition 
of troops, as the event proved, was admirable. The attack was 
renewed with increased vigonr from east to west at 8-30 p.m., 
and another exciting night ensued. The heaviest fighting was, 
as on the previous night, in the Sappers' quarter, and our 
casualties were heavy. 

A most determined onslaught on the fortified serai (about 
100 yards in front of the north-east corners of the central en- 
closure) resulted in 10 of the 31st Punjab Infantry being killed 
and 11 wounded, but not before they had inflicted a heavy 
punishment on their assailants, who were- forced to draw off, 
thus allowing the removal of the killed and wounded. This 
corner was the only entrance to the sera2, and the 25 men of 
the 3lst Punjab Infantry blocked it up most elf ectively, holding 
their position till 3 o'clock in the morning against most deter- 
mined attacks, those who were left only retiring by means of 
a ladder when the enemy had set fire to the serai and the flames 
•were enveloping them. Well might Colonel Meiklejohm 
eulogise their gallantry and dauntless courage, and the pity is 
that the darkness and noise of firing prevented the position of 
the brave little party being appreciated and help sent to them. 
Only foar of the defenders escaped being killed or wounded. 

The 45th Sikhs had a still more difficult task this night in 
keeping the enemy off, and on several occasions the tribesmen 
penetrated into their trenches, only to be driven back with 
heavy losses on each occasion. On the west the enemy 
pressed the 24th Punjab Infantry hard all night; Lieutenant 
Costello receiving his first wound, a long flesh wound 
penetrating the back and coming out through the right arm. 
This occurred about 7-30 p.m. in a sortie up the water nullah, 
in which the enemy were driven off, leaving several dead andi 
standard behind them. The Martini sharp-shooters from the 
peak on the west were most annoying, getting the range of tho 
guns with the 24th Punjab Infantry, and sniping at them aU 
night, wounding two gunners. At 5-30 A.M. a reconnaissance 
went out from this regiment to North Malakand, and cleared the 



46 

«nemy off the rocks, killing 5 ; in the meanwhile the gathering 
on Gallows Tree hill, about 700 yards from the west of the 
position, had moved down to a high spur about 400 yards from 
the 24th Punjab Infantry. On the return of the reconnoitring 
company from North Malakand, Lieutenant Climo, command- 
.ing the 24th Punjab Infantry, decided on driving them off. 
■In the first instance a company under Lieutenant Hawlins 
moved out to reconnoitre their rear, but the enemy very soon 
displayed their superiority in numbers, and when they could 
no longer fire, rolled stones down on the company from their 
lofty position. 

Lieutenant Climo at once went to their a,ssistance with 
lialf of the remaining force at his disposal, leaving the guns 
and remainder of the half battalion, 24th Punjab Infantry, 
to cover his advance. The guns were worked most ably by 
Subadar Sher Singh of No. 8 Bombay Mountain Battery, Royal 
Artillery, and without their assistance it is doubtfal if the 
counter-attack on Gallows Tree hill could have been carried 
through. The swordsmen of the enemy quickly gave way, 
but their sharp-shooters, armed with Martinis, stuck to their 
ground until our men reached 50 yards of their sangars, when they 
retired to the next peak and re-opened fire. Just as Gallows 
Tree was reached, a message came from the OflBcer Commanding 
the Brigade to say that a party of the 24th Punjab Infantry, 
under Lieutenant H. A. Gib, was advancing from the iortvid 
Guides Hill to their assistance. Lieutenant Rawlins was accord- 
ingly ordered to proceed to the south along the crest of the 
hill to join hands with this party, which he eventually did, 
returning to camp with 1| companies via Fort Malakand. The 
enemy had chosen the west as their line of retreat, and they 
•were accordingly followed up by one company under Lieute- 
nant Climo ; the enemy's riflemen still covered the retreat, not 
moving themselves till our men were within 100 yards and then 
always under cover. Eventually, descending the gorge lead- 
ing up to the pass over the Utman Khel hills, large bodies of 
the enemy were oome upon returning towards Deri to the north, 
and the Utman Khel country to the west. At a range of 400 
yards heavy losses were inflicted on them, many being killed out- 
right, whilst numbers hobbled awaj*" wounded. Their dead in 
this counter-attack was estimated at about 40, with 60 to 100 
wounded. At the start at least 1 ,000 men were crowning tho 
heii;!- from Gallows Tree hill downwards. 



47 

As a large portion of the retreating enemy had fled into the 
village of Jalalkot, the guns were called up, and the village 
shelled, eight out of ten shells dropping right into the middle. 
The casualties to the 100 men of 24th Punjab Infantry in this 
admirable action were only 1 Subadar, bullet wound, and one 
sepoy shot through the hand. The result of this counter-attack, 
which Colonel Meiklejohn wel4 described as executed with 
soldierly ability and dash was that the enemy evacuated these 
hills invariably before dawn, and seldom returned again till 6 
P.M. The casualties were as follows on the night of the 27th 
July : — 

45th Sikhs 

Sappers and Miners 
31st Punjab Infantry 
24th Punjab Infantry 



No. 8 Mountain Battery 



Killed 


Wounded, 


2 


14 


... 


1 


10 


11 


•It 


2 officers (1 British, 




1 Native) and 




2 sepoys. 


*•< 


1 



12 29 



The day of the 28th very soon showed the fact that they 
were practically besieged ; the enemy occupying all the heights 
and sniping all day long at most of the objects of interest in the 
camp. Our men now spent their time in improving defences 
and making cover for extra pickets : three lines of barbed wire 
were run right round the Commissariat, Sappers and Miners, 
and hospital enclosures ; the abattis on the east and south was 
strengthened ; the wall dividing the Commissariat godown 
from the Saopers' enclosure was also demolished. The Brigade 
mule-drivers were utilised in most of this work, so that all the 
combatant ranks were able to avail themselves of the time for 
rest. Extra sangars were built all along the west aspect of the 
camp, and as the Guides Infantry were expected at any time, 
it was hoped that this quarter of the camp would be con- 
siderably reinforced before night. 

By 8-30 P.M. the fight was recommenced; before dark the 
Chakdara road revealed a fresh sight; the white track being 
absolutely black with the sombre-clad Bonerwals — the enemy 
•whose appearance was confidently expected. The tribesmen 
displayed their usual energy on the centre. The 31st Punjab 
Infantry were here occupying the east and north faces of the 



48 

Sftppers' and Miners* lines, and at tlie bazar corner, where 
they had all along shown so much vigour. On the 26th July 
the enemy made the most determined attempts to effect'an 
entrance, and it was only the great stubbornness displayed here 
that prevented them succeeding in their object. The casu- 
alties in the 3lst Punjab Infantry were very heavy, 2 killed 
and 21 wounded, including Lieutenant H. B. Ford and 
Lieutenant Swinley, the former very severely. In fact it was 
entirely due to Surgeon-Lieutenant T. 11. Hugo's perseverance 
that Ford's life was sa"?ed ; with the greatest difficulty the bleed- 
ing was stopped, Hugo holding on to the arteries with his fingers 
for some hours. The 45th were kept busy throughout the 
night, losing 2 killed and no further casualties. The Guides 
Infantry, after a magnificent march from Mardan, arrived at 
7 P.M. this evening. They had started at 1. a.m. on the 27th, 
and notwithstanding the great heat arrived fit and ready to go 
on duty at once. Owing to the urgent need for reinforcements, 
it was found necessary to send the regiment straight to picket 
duty, part going to Maxim point and part on the east side 
next the 45th Sikhs. 

The gallant perseverance of the Guides in this quarter 
saved the camp time after time ; unfortunately their casualties 
were considerable, 2 sepoys being killed, and 1 native officer 
and 9 sepoys being wounded. Their performance here speaks 
volumes for them, as they came on to this arduous duty without 
rest or food. The Guides Cavalry, as on the previous night, 
were posted in the Hospital enclosure and Sappers' and Miners' 
lines ; here Lieutenant H. L. S. Maclean (who was afterwards 
killed at Landakai) was wounded, having a most miraculous 
escape, the bullet entering his mouth and coming out of the 
cheek without damaging the bone. Two ponies were also 
wounded this night belonging to the Guides Cavalry. On the 
west the enemy had collected in great numbers and were most 
persistent until 3-30 a.m. ; they many times came charging 
down the hillside, but the guns were not to their liking. The 
casualties here were fortunately slight, 2 gunners and 1 sepoy, 
24th Punjab Infantry, only being wounded. 

The enemy during the morning of the 29th were fairly quiet. 
About I P.M., however, they began to trouble the force on all 
sides. Two or three times the "alarm " called us to reinforc-e our 
pickets. Matters quieted down again by 3 p,m., the cause of 



49 

the trouble probably being the more eager of our fanatical 
enemies anticipating their big night, for that day was Jumarat 
and also the appearance of the new moon, and the enemy 
evidently meant to falfil their promise of making their bigpesf; 
effort on that night. 

The enemy renewed their attentions all along the line at 
5-30 P.M., the number of Martinis firing being largely increased. 
A sortie was again made from the 24th Punjab Infantry 
this evening. The enemy had crept up the hill and posted 
themselves behind rocks within 200 yards of the picket line ; 
Lieutenants Clirao and Morton, when walking round the picket 
line, were shot at three or four times, Lieutenant Morton's 
orderly being wounded. Half a company, under Lieutenant 
Rawlins, was at once sent on to a high spur on the left to work 
down behind these parties of the enemy, the other half company 
with Lieutenant Climo covering the advance. Two bodies 
of the enemy, numbering about 40 each, were turned off the 
rocks with a loss of 2 killed and several wounded. The snip- 
ing from the west now ceased until after dark. During tha 
day the serai was pulled down, obstacles placed where required, 
the bazar was demolished, and large bonfires built ia 
prominent places. These were found most useful, and assisted 
tlie garrison in inflicting heavy losses on the enemy. The 
enemy, probably on this night, were in larger numbers than on 
any previous night; and every precaution had been t^ken to 
repel their attacks. It was curious, however, that on reckoning 
casualties in the morning, the right and centre had had com- 
paratively few casualties. The enemy had been no less vigorous 
in their assaults; on the left, however, the heaviest fighting 
took place. 

Time after time from 8 30 p.m. to 1-30 a.m. the enemy 
rushed np to the sangars in difierent parts of ihe position, only 
to be repulsed with loss on each occasion ; at 1-.30 p.m. the 
picket guarding the water nuUah and rear ot* 24th Punjat 
Infantry camp was rushed in the most determined way, the 
enemy, regardless of anything, leaping into the savgars. They 
were, however, repulsed after a short hand-to-hand conflict, but 
not until Lieutenant Costello had been wounded for the second 
time, a severe wound, the left arm being shattered ; one 
havildar was severely wounded (ho has since died of the 
wound), cne sepoy had a severe sword cut, and several 



50 

had lesser sword cut wounds. About 2 A.M. the eoQdj in 
front of the Afridi company of the 24th Punjab Infantry, 
attempted a parley, asking the Afridis to come over and 
give up their rifles, and telling them that there T^as no 
possible reason for doubt that Malakand would be taken sooner 
or later. Finding the replies unsatisfactory, they now endea- 
vonred to ascertain our resources, their curiosity about the 
supply of ammunition being very keen. Our men told them 
that his most necessary article of warfare was just about 
finished. 

At this pleasing piece of information, to them, they 
earnestly begged the Afridis to reconsider their decision, and 
not be so foolish as to throw this last chance of safety away, 
proposing that they should come into the sangars, divide up the 
rifles and ammunition, and then proceed to finish up Malakand. 
This was agreed to with the greatest alacrity. Out came a 
score or more of the enem}^ from behind rocks about 50 yards 
away and began to advance. They had not come far before 
every Afridi had covered his man and for five seconds the crack 
of the rifles showed these gentry what their real intentions were 
As usual the enemy, with the exception of their sharpshooters, 
cleared off about 3 a.ji. In the morning matters appeared 
fairly quiet 

The casualties during the night were as follows : — Guides 
Cavalry, 1 horse wounded ; Guides Infantry, nil; 45th Siklis. 2 
sepoys wounded ; 24th Punjab Infantry, Lieutenant Costello 
and 10 men wounded ; 31st Punjab Infantry, nil; Sappers and 
Miners, nil ; No. 8 Bombay Mountain Battery, Royal Artillery, 
2 men wounded. 

On the 29th the 35th Sikhs and 38th Dogras and 
details of the Guides under Colonel A. J. F. Reid arrived at 
Dargai. The fearful heat had caused the deaths from heat 
apoplexy of 21 men of the 35th Sikhs on the way up. 



51 
CHAPTER X. 

FIGHTING TO THE RESCUE OF CHAKDARA. 

T was reported that the " mad fakir " had personally led 
*) this attack, but that he had been woanded and had 
fled to Landakai : also that his second-in-command 
and companio)! had been killed. There is not the 
slightest doubt that the enemy's losses during the night were 
very heavy. 

The day of the 30th was the quietest the garrison had had 
fio far : no alarms of any sort. Officers now commenced to 
arrive from India; Colonel H. A. Sawyer, 45th Sikhs, and 
Major J. G. Ramsay, 24th Punjab Infantry, arriving in the 
morning among others. The day was as usual occupied in 
repairing damages and strengthening the position, there being 
wire entanglements, whilst the barbed wire placed round 
enclosures was generally cut in many places, showing how close 
the enemy were in the habit of coming up. This night again 
found the enemy in earnest on the right, the 45th and Guides, who 
were there, doing grand work ; the former lost 1 sepoy killed 
and 6 wounded, the Guides 2 wounded. 

The enemy attacked in great force all night, and time after 
time charged right up to the sangars. They must have lost 
severely, as the Guides picked up four standards and many bodies 
close under one of their breastworks. The Guides Cavalry 
again had one horse wounded ; the Gunners, 3Ist Punjab In- 
fantry, Sappers, and 24th Punjab Infantry, has no casualties. 

Early on the morning of the 31st was ascertained the pro- 
bable reason of the enemy giving the left and centre an easy time 
and occnpyiug the attention of oar right. Hearing of the near 
approach of the 35th Sikhs and 38th Dogras, they detached 
part of their forces to attempt to cut them off ; this, however, 
did not succeed, as with the exception of a slight skirmish, 
both regiments arrived safely. For the first time since the 
night of the 26th, British Officers were now able to visit North 
Malakand ; this was done to ascertain the feasibility of using 
the water-supply there. The rocks were accordingly cleared, 
in doing which four of the enemy were killed, two jezailsj one 
sword and one spear being captured. A portion of the Guides 



Cavalry, under Captain G. M. Baldwin, D. S. 0., reconnoitred up 
to the limits of the original camp, and then returned by the road, 
followed by the half company of the 24th Punjab Infantry 
whicli had been utilised to clear the spurs. There was a good 
deal of firing at this party, but with the exception of one horse 
being wounded no casualties occurred. On the night of the 
3lst the attack was once more heaviest on the right, the bon- 
fires and extra defences in the centre apparently being too miich 
for the enemy's feelings; the left of the position was also leSs 
vigorously assaulted. The casualties during the day and night 
were as follows : — Guides, four wounded ; 45th Sikhs, one 
killed, 6 wounded ; 31st Punjab Infantry, Sappers, Royal Artil- 
lery, Guides Cavalry, 11th Bengal Lancers and 24th Punjab 
Infantry, no casualties. 

During the day of 1st August orders were issued for a 
lelief column to move out to Chakdara ; the Cavalry, 11th 
Bengal Lancers and Guides, accordingly moved down by the 
North Malakand road about 3 p.m. under Lieutenant-Colonel 
R, B. Adams of the Guides. On reaching the valley, the 
enemy swarmed down from the heights : it was truly wonder- 
ful to see the reckless manner in which these men rushed to 
certain death. The cavalry pursuit was a grand display, and 
the losses to the enemy must have been very heavy, at least 
100 bodies being left on the field. Our losses in this brilliant 
affair were, 11th Bengal Lancers, 3 sowars wounded, one horse 
killed, 4 wounded ; Guides, one sowar killed ; Lieutenant Bald- 
win severely, and Lieutenant C. V. Keyes of the Guides, slightly 
wounded, one Native Officer, one duffadar and 9 sowaivS 
wounded. Colonel Adams' horse was killed under him, three 
other horses were killed and 18 horses wounded. The broken 
nature of the ground cramped somewhat the action of the caval- 
ry, and as the enemy were gradually working round their left 
flank to cut them ofE from their only line of retreat, Colonel 
Meiklejohn sent Major E. Hobday, R.A., StafF Officer, to 
Colonel Reid to order Lieutenant -Colonel Adams to withdraw. 
As the cavalry wended their way up the road the enemy 
attempted to attack them, but Major J. G. Ramsay, command- 
ing 24th Punjab Infantry, prevented this by a well-timed 
counter-attack, in which about 250 of the enemy were turned 
out of the rocks just below the roadway. In this last little 
affair the losses to the enemy were estimated at 20 killed and 
manj wounded, whilst two standards, three rifles, and two 



53 

swords were captured ia this sortie. By tHis time thc day 
had grown too old to attempt the move to Chakdara. 

The same day Sir Bin don Blood arrived and took over the 
command from Colonel Meiklejoha and orders were issned by 
him for the following force to bivouac on Gretna Green during 
the nicrht, ready for the daybreak march to the relief of 
Chakdara : — 

400 Rifles, 2tth Punjab Infaotrj, under Major Ramsay. 

400 Rifles, 45th Sikhs, under Colonel H. A. Sawyer. 

200 Rifles, Guides Infantry, under Lieutenant P. C. Eliotfc Lockhart. 

2 Squadrons. Guides Cavalry, under Lieutenant G. D.'S n^^. i_ i 
oLi^K o.'a n^^^^^i T^riJ vr,.^^^ / The whole 



Sraitb, 2nd Central India Horse. 



un- 

2 Squadrons, 11th Bengal Lancers, under Major S. B. [ «®^ Lieutenant- 
Beatson. ) Colonel Adams. 

4 Guns, No. 8 Bengal Mountain Battery, under Captain A. H. C. Birch, 

R. A. 
50 Sappers, No. 5 Company, Queen's Own Sappers and Miners, 

under Lieutenant A. R. Winsloe, R. E. 

2 Sections Native Field Hospital under Surgeon Captain E. F, 
Whitchurch, v. c, L. M. s. 

Colonel Meiklejohn was in sole command of the relieviii;^ 
column. 

To this date from July 26th to August 1st the casualties 
were as follows : — 



:illed. 


Wounde 


1 


19 


22 


131 



Officers ... ... ,„ .,« 

Non-commissioned officers and men ... 

All were settled in their places at 9 p.m. and a good night's 
rest ensured compared witii the previous six nights. An alarm 
occurred about 1-30 a.m. and it was a good sight to see the 
cool and collected way with which the men stood to their arms 
without moving ; it was not long before all were at rest again. 
Sir Bindon Blood as soon as it was light enough gave the order 
to Brigadier- General Meiklejohn to move off, passed an order 
to Colonel T. H. Goldney to advance, and went quickly himself 
to the top of Castle Rock Hill to superintend the operations 
generally. Colonel Goldney's force was taken from the Castle 
Rock pickets, and consisted of about 250 rifles, .'^5th Sikhs 
under Lieutenant-Colonel L. J. E. Bradshaw, and 50 rif^c«, 



54 

38th Dogras, under Captain L. 0. H. Stainforth. His atfnok 
was supported by the remainder of the pickets holding Castlo 
Rock, and by 2 guns, No. 8 Bengal Mountain Battery, in posi- 
tion near the pickets and under the command of Jemadar 
Nawab of that Battery. Colonel Goldney and his men, on 
receipt of the order, advanced silently to within about one 
hundred yards of the enemy's position without being perceived. 
Then the enemy, becoming suddenly aware of what was going 
on, opened an irregular and ineffective fire, and as our men 
came to close quarters ran away in all directions, leaving seven 
of their number dead and one prisoner in our hands. There was 
no casualty of any sort on our side. The last portion of the 
column to relieve Chakdara moved off at 5-15 a.m. We had 
evidently taken the enemy unawares. They made, however, a 
grand stand at the foot of the graded road ; from there onwards 
to the heights on our right they collected in thousands, and for 
about half an hour their resistance was of the stubbornest. 
The 35th Sikhs crowned the heights on the right, the Guides 
those just below, and the 45th the small hill on the left of the 
road which was crowded with the enemy. 

The position was taken at the point of the bayonet, the 
enemy suffering very heavy losses. The enemy now retired 
absolutely by thousands along the heights on our right, flying 
disheartened and panic stricken in all directions into the plains, 
where they were pursued by the cavalry and still further 
discomfited. One might say that the defence of Malakand 
ceased at 6-30 a.m. on the 2nd August. It was expected to 
find Dogra's hill occupied, but the enemy evidently had more 
urgent affairs at their villages. At Betkeli and Amandarra 
another resistance was made by the enemy, but they were 
driven from the village and the Amandarra heights with 
great loss. In the village of Amandarra Lieutenant Wat- 
ling's sword was recovered. From this point on, the road lies 
through rice fields, and our men were paid no further attention 
by the enemy, who up to Amandarra sniped at the rear guard 
but fortunately without doing much damage. The last two 
miles of the road was very tedious work ; though every effort 
was being made to hurry on to Chakdara, where the firing 
was very heavy. The enemy had broken down all the bridges, 
and it was no easy matter moving doolies laden with wounded 
and ammunition mules through the water-logged hill fields. 
Eventually Chakdara was reached at 6-80 a. m., the bridge 



55 

being found in perfect order. The relieving force now heard" 
how close a thing it had been for them, and there was Utile 
room for doubt that they arrived just in the nick of time. 

The caBualtiea of the relieving column were as follows : 
45th Sikhs, 7 wounded, 

No. 5 Company, Madras Sappers aud Miners, 1 wounded j 
Guides Cavalry, 1 sowar and 3 horses wounded ; 

Guides Cavalry, 2 sepoys killed, 1 native oflBcer and 6 sepoys woanded ; 
35th Sikhs, 2 sepoys killed, 3 wounded ; 
24th Punjab Infantry, 4 sepoys wounded ; 

No. 8 Bombay Mountain Battery, Royal Artillery, 3 gunners wounded, 
1 mule killed, 1 pony and 5 mules wounded. 




HOW GHAKBAftA WAS DEFENDED. 

CHAPTER XL 

A BELEAGERED GARRISON. 

MONGST those British Officers who took part in the 
eventful game of polo on July 26th, was one from 
Chakdara, who at the conclusion of the game found 
himself compelled to ride another race, and this time 
for his life. This was Lieutenant H. B. Rattray, of the 45th 
Sikhs (" Rattray's Sikhs ") whose experience was an exciting 
but unenviable one. Just when he had finished his game of 
polo and was on the point of departure for Chakdara Fort, he 
was met by two sowars of the 11th Bengal Lancers. These 
men had ridden in with a letter of warning from Rattray's 
brother officer at Chakdara, and in it Lieutenant Wheatley had 
briefly stated that large numbers of Pathans with standards 
were advancing towards Malakand on the left bank of the 
Swat from the east, and on Chakdara on the right bank, from 
the north and north-east. Lieutenant Rattray, made his way 
back right through the hostile enemy as fast as possible, and 
after an exciting ride, found, on his arrival at the fort, that 
Lieutenant Wheatley's report was only too true. He at once 
reported the serious aspect of afEairs to the Deputy Assistant 
Adjutant-General, Malakand, by telegram; and it was partly 
owiog to the receipt of this wire and a previous wire from 



56 

Lieutenant Minchin, Assistant Political OflBcer, that the troops 
at Malakand were prepared for the attack. 

It is curious to note how particular the tribes were during 
the day of the 26th not to commit themselves to any preliminary 
acts of violence. At Chakdara, Havildar Gur^it Singh was out 
sketching a few miles from the fort in the afternoon : he was sur- 
rounded by an advanced party of the enemy, who took away a 
compass, a pair of binoculars, and some rupees, but permitted him 
to go back without harm. This havildar reached the fort almost 
simultaneously with Lieutenant Rattray, his story corrobo- 
rating all other reports. Preparations were now made for any 
eventoality ; and arrangements were made with a havildar of 
the Dir Levies to give the garrison warning of the near ap- 
proach of the enemy, the signal being the lighting of a fire on 
the hill to the north of the fort. At 10-15 p.m. the signal 
fire was seen. The garrison at once fell in at their posts as 
the alarm sounded ; and it was not long before the enemy 
opened fire, the attack coming from the west; but finding the 
fire too hot for them gave up their attempt in this direction. 

In a short time the attack was resumed from the north-east, 
strenuous efforts being made to escalade the walls by means of 
•ladders taken from the Civil Hospital. Here again they were 
repulsed, and they made their final attempt for that night on 
the east side, which was occupied by the llth Bengal Lancers. 
This attempt was, however, not sustained, for long before day- 
light they had all drawn off, occupying the hills to the north 
and north-west, whence they sniped all day bat without inflict- 
ing any casualties on the garrison. Their fire was, however, 
well enough aimed to render moving about an unpleasant 
operation. Surgeon-Captain V. Hngc, of the 31st Punjab 
Infantry, who was in medical charge at Chakdara in addition 
to being Civil Surgeon with the Government Hospital 
built for the use of the tribes, had rescued all the medical instru- 
ments from the hospital at 7 p. M. on the 26th July. At this time 
several Maliks from Upper Swat had promised him that, what- 
ever the result of this rising of the tribes, the hospital should 
remain intact. It was apparent how little was the influence the 
Maliks had over the fanatical enemy, for, as will be described 
later, the hospital was occupied and all medical stores ruthlessly 
destroyed before the siege was raised. At 8 A. m. on the 27th 
July, Capiaiu Wright, accompanied by Captain D. Saker, 



57 

Transport OflScer, Malakand Brigade, with 40 sabres, llth 
Bengal Lancers, arrived from North Malakand. 

And let me here describe the exciting ride Captain Wright 
Avith his squadron experienced on the morning of the 27th, the 
route of which is shown in the sketch map. No sooner did 
they debouch on to the main road from the low hills sur- 
rounding North Malakand, than the enemy opened fire on them, 
but fortunately their aim was far from accurate. The cavalry 
tui'ned off on to the Khar plain, going by way of the polo road ; 
on the plain were dotted groups of the eneray, who, however, 
showed the greatest activity in bolting on to the hills whenever 
the cavalry quickened their pace. The ground traversed here 
■was exactly the same piece of country over which the Guides 
Cavalry made their famous charge daring the expedition in 
1895. Badkala was reached safely, but just beyond rise the 
Amandara heights through which the road passes. This was 
held very strongly by the enemy, and it was deemed impos- 
sible, except with great loss of life, to attempt getting through 
by the road : this squadron of the llth Bengal Lancers happen- 
ed to have just come up from Nowshera in relief, and, there- 
fore, knew little of the country. A pathway was discovered 
leading under the hill close to the river ; this appeared a promis- 
ing road, and it was decided to pass through. Like most of 
these hill tracks, itended abruptly in an almost impassable rock, 
and it is a miracle how the cavalry managed to get through 
or over. The enemy, noting their intentions, came down 
the hill and opened fire, and at one time got in so close that 
Captain Wright and Captain Baker were able to nse their 
revolvers. These were an exciting few moments, but the rocks 
were eventually left behind. On the Chakdara side thea road 
■was now found occupied, so, under a heavy fire, the squdron 
had to take to the river, and managed to cross two large 
streams of water. The advance was then continued until the 
top of the island was reached, and here the river was re-crossed 
without casualty. In crossing the rice fields to reach the road, 
two sowars were wounded and Captain Wright's horse was hit 
in the thigh, notwithstanding which it gamely managed to 
carry its rider into Chakdara. The enemy kept up their fire 
and pursuit until the Maxim gun on the Chakdara Bridge 
head compelled them to stop. Dnriug the last mile or so of 
the road, the enemy investing the fort on the right bank also 
poened fire ; but loriaiiutely the squadron rcuched irs q;r.\iy^ 



58 

withonfc further casualty, and joined the beleagured ganison 
cf which on his arrival Captain Wright took Command, and 
conducted the defence of the long and trying siege. 

At 11-30 A.M. the tribesmen again commenced to attack most 
determinedly ; it was extraordinary to see the fanatical bravery 
of some of the enemy. Time after time standard-bearers, backed 
up by swordsmen, would charge straight up to the walls of the 
fort, only to fall riddled with bullets. Their losses during 
tbis morning attack were very heavy, the dead lying about 
unreiDoved all day. After this no further desire was shown by 
the enemy to tempt Providence by daylight; retiring to the 
hills sniping continued until evening. During the day the 
signallers in the Signal Tower on the west were reinforced by 
six men, sufficient supplies for several days, and as much water 
as possible were also sent up. This was carried out under 
cover of both Maxims and that portion of the troops manning 
the west wall. It was found impossible to further communicate 
with Malakand, the telegraph wires having been cut during the 
night, and the enemy absolutely prevented signalling. The 
attack was resumed at 11 p. m., the enemy surrounding the 
fort on all sides, coming up close under the walls. Lieute- 
nant Wheatley had, during daylight, trained the 9-pounder 
gun and Maxims on those points from which attacks might be 
expected : the result was satisfactory, for on opening fire with 
these guns the enemy cleared off for some hours. They returned 
about 1-30 A.M., this time attacking the north-east corner, 
and once more brought up ladders for escalading purposes : 
foiled in their attempts they drew off before daylight to the 
cover of the hills. Prom the outset every possible effort was 
made to give cover to the garrison. Captain Baker superin- 
tended this work, and it is doubtless owing to the excellent 
arrangement made by him, that many of the garrison were 
saved again and again. >> 

The enemy returned to the attack earlier than heretofore 
on the evening of the 28th, at 5-30 p.m. They formed a 
large semi-circle of not less than 2,000 armed men, and 
interspersed among them were about 200 standard-bearers, the 
whole forming a very fine spectacle. The advance was made 
by their usual rushes and accompanied with their well-known 
maniacal shouts. Their standard-bearers, leading parties from 
cover to cover, worked their way up under the walls, where- 



59 

the steady fire of our Sikhs repelled all attacks. As darkness 
closed ia a body of them crossed the barbed wire, and scaling 
a corner of the rock discharged their rifles almost in the faces 
of our men. The night was a repetition of previous ones. 

The morning of the 29th July was spent in making cover 
from reverse fire, especially along the pathway up to the guns^ 
which was open to the fire of the enemy, now sangered on the 
hill west of the fort. At 3 p.m. on this day large reinforce- 
ments arrived at Chakdara village. They were evidently keen 
on getting to business at once, and must have had a master- 
mind among them, for their chief efforts were directed against 
the Signal Tower. In spite of a very heavy fire, both from 
the tower and fort, they succeeded in reaching the doorway 
itself, and here attempted to fire it. Having set fire to the 
combustibles arranged for the purpose, they ranged them- 
selves under cover round the fort and on the hills north of 
the Lower, giving vent to their feelings with shouts of delight, 
Jt was not long, however, before they relapsed into silence when 
li was found that no damage had been done. At sunset the fore- 
sight of the Fort Maxim was shot away ; this was a very serious 
occurrence, as the enemy had become imbued with a very profound 
respect for this weapon. It was with a great sense of relief the 
garrison found that the Military Works armourer was able to 
remedy this for us : he very quickly rigged up a temporary sight, 
which answered as well as the original. The enemy continued 
their attacks on the tower till 8 p.m., after which they appeared 
to have had more than enough, for they made no attack during 
the night, merely contenting themselves with keeping up a 
continuous fire from the hills. 

The day of the 30th July was comparatively, quiet, and 
it was found possible to give the whole garrison a few hours' 
rest in relief, a much -needed rest indeed, considering that the 
garrison was well-nigh worn out with want of sleep and 
fatigue. No determined attack was made this night, in fact the 
elements were against it ; a heavy rain and cold wind being 
almost more unpleasant than the enemy. So far they had been 
able each day to send up supplies and water to their comrades 
in the Signalling Tower. On the 3Jst July, at 6 a.m., the 
usual excursion with water, &c., was made, and this proved to 
be the last received by them until after the relief about 10 
A.M. on the 2nd August. 




60 



CHAPTER XII. 



CHA^DARA'S URGENT APPEAL: "HELP US. *• 

P to date the difficulty of keeping up signalling com- 
munication with Malakand had been well nigh im- 
possible, and it undoubtedly would have been so 
had it not been for the bravery and devotion of 
the"gallant signallers of the 45th Sikhs. One of these men, 
especially Sepoy Prem Singh, displayed the most surprising 
gallantry ; he used daily to go out through a port hole in 
the tower with the helio apparatus, and at the risk of his life 
under fire from all sides, managed to get urgent messages 
through to Malakand ; the fact of thus keeping up communi- 
cation with the outer world did no little to cheer all ranks. 

Another determined attack was made at 4-30 p.m. on the 
31st July, but the Maxims and 9-pounder did such execution 
that the enemy cleared off to Chakdara village almost quicker 
than they came. 

Sunday, the 1st August, was the commencement of 30 
very anxious hours. The enemy very considerably increased 
in numbers and furnished with many more rifles, invested the 
fort on all sides. During the night they occupied the Civil 
Hospital, the walls of which they loopholed ; the east end o^. 
Signal Tower Hill was also occupied by them permanently, thus 
cutting off communication with the gallant little party holding 
the tower and rendering it impossible to replenish the all impor- 
tant water-supply. During the day it was found almost impossi- 
ble to move about within the fort, the north and east faces being 
commanded by the marksmen on Signal Tower Hill, and the 
west face also being commanded by the conical hill north of 
the fort : the enemy had every portion marked, in fact it 
seemed as if men had been specially told off for every yard of 
open space. Such a methodical and determined siege portended 
increased danger. All day long the enemy continued to increase, 
and matters grew so serious that it was decided to send an 
argent appeal for help. 

Owing to the danger and difficulty of signalling, a long 
message was out of the question ; so it was made as short as 



61 

possible and the gallant Sikh signaller again risked his life 
to helio the two words " Help us." 

These words were read at Malakand and it was this 
which determined Colonel Meiklcjohn to take steps at all 
hazards to relieve the little baud of defenders. The message 
was wired from Malakand to India and from there it was cabled 
to England. Everywhere it was known that the garrison 
was in dire distress and it was with feelings of great relief that 
the news was known of the prompt answer and effective 
help which was sent out from the Malakand ? 

Regarding the helio message it may be said that as a 
matter of fact a long message was made out exf laining the 
situation as far as ammunition, rations, and casualties were 
concerned ; but, as the signal tower was surrounded, such a 
lengthy message was impossible, and these two words were 
flashed only through the pluck of Sepoy Prem Singh, 45th 
Sikhs, who ran out of the tower, down the khud, put up his 
helio, flashed the two words, and bolted in again, under a 
heavy lire. This tower was garrisoned by 16 men of the 45th 
Sikhs, and the way they foaght may be realised from the fact 
that GO bodies were counted round the tower after one of the 
attacks on it, besides those the enemy were able to carry away. 

In a worse plight than the garrison in the fort was the 
little force in the tower. During the whole day of the 1st 
August pressing requests came from them for water, but this n 
could not be supplied ; any attempt at a sortie could only 
have resulted disastrously, for by this time the fort was invested i 
by close on 10,000 tribesmen. We may be sure the fort 
garrison felt for their unfortunate comrades in the tower, and J 
that ii it had been possible they would have relieved them. 
All hopes were now centred on Malakand's reply to the urgent 
signal. 

During the night of the 1st August nothing particular 
occurred, but at daybreak on the 2nd August began the most 
determined assault that had been experienced so far. The 
«nemy appeared bent on taking the fort at any cost; ladders 
were placed against the walls, and bundles of grass brought op 
to cover the barbed wire. All this was carried out under a 
murderoas fire from our men. Kiahen Singh, commanding^ 
the 9-ponnder gun detachment, was killed and two sepoys 
Mvercly wounded on the north face. Notwilhstanding thQ^9 



vigorous assauUs tbey held ilieir own for four or five hours ; 
-even then it seemed that their overwhelming numbers might 
be too much for our small force. 

The defence could not niach longer hold out. At this 
critical moment the cavalrj of the relieving column appeared 
through the Amandara Pass. As they approached the bridgf 
the enemy began to draw off. Now the tables were turned and 
well did the Sikhs make use of their opportunity. At this 
time Lieutenant Rattray was himself atanding by the west gate. 
Seeing the enemy commencing to go, he moved out at once 
with some six sepoys, daringly ran across the road into the hos- 
pital and drove the remainder of the enemy out. These men 
fled by the river bed, but vvere soon overtaken by our Sikhs, who 
with mad lush and Khalsa yell leaped on the foe and wreaked 
the vengeance they had so long and so patiently hugged to 
themselves. It A\as a scene such as only frontier warfare can 
provide. Not a soul of the rebel party by the river ben 
escaped, some 30 or 40 dead bodies being left on tl^* 
ground. This party was soon joined by Captain Baker, ano 
Lieutenant Wheatley with a reinforcement from the detacli 
ment. 

As they returned they found the cavalry checked by a heavy 
fire from the savgars on the Signal Tower Hill. Lieutenaiii 
Rattray now attacked the sangars, driving the enemy off with 
heavy loss on to the plain before, where the cavalry was ready 
for them, Captain Wright vdth his squadron inflicting great 
damage over the plain, and Major Beatson accounting for large 
numbers in the charge throngh the rice fields. The last of the 
enemy to leave the furthest sangar wounded Lieutenant Rattray 
in the neck ; fortunately a slight wound, which in no way 
prevented him from being able to meet the General Officei 
Commanding the relieving column, and receiving the con- 
gratulations which he so richly deserved for the admirable 
manner in which he had helped to conduct the defence. The total 
losses to the garrison were three killed and nine wounded : 
numbers which speak volumes for the excellence of the defences, 
and the forethought shown by the officers in preparing cover. 
The enemy lost in killed alone outside Chakdara 2,000 alone. 
One discharge of the smooth bore gun, fired at the enemy as 
they came away from praying at the mosqne, alone killed 
eighty. 



63 

One last, word for the little band of Siklis in tlie Signal 
Tower to whom in many ways is due the fact that- there was 
a garrison at all left to relieve. They got their well deserved 
drink about 10 A. M., and we may well imagine that no nectar 
ever tasted more refreshing, sweeter, or cooler to them than 
the plain Swat river water for which they had thirsted for so 
many weary honrs. 

Tlie succouring force from Malakand arrived in the morn- 
ing and relieved the gallant Chakdara garrison of a great load 
of anxiety. The Malakand contingent also was not sorry once 
more to be able to stretch its legs in the Swat Valley instead 
of being besieged in the fort at Malakand. Throughout the 
idea of the tribesmen undoubtedly was to harass and wear out 
the garrison at Chakdara, and if possible cause them to exhaust 
the ammunition. The fort, which is armed with Maxim guns, 
is practically impregnable to capture from tribesmen so long 
as any cartridges remain with the defending troops, and even 
should ammunition run out, the scarped rocky eminence of 
great strength on which the fort is built would enable storm- 
ing parties to be beaten back at the point of the bayonet. 

It must have been a matter of surprise to many why the 
tribesmen never attempted to destroy the Chakdara Bridge. 
The reason is said to be that they were so confident of com- 
plete victory that they thought it would be well to keep the 
bridge in good repair for subsequent use. Their overweening 
confidence in the "mad fakir" is amply testified by the 
undaunted way in which they rallied to the attack time and 
again, spite of the terrible losses inflicted on them by the old 
smoothbore and the Maxims. Prayer was held in a mosque in 
the village of Chakdara, and until the fort was relieved the 
tribesmen, with scaling-ladders ready to hand, came straight 
from the mosque to the walls, certain each time that at last 
victory was to be theirs. The only result was the greatest 
slaughter ever inflicted on the frontier. Daring the last Afghan 
war, the only occasion when over a thousand men were slain, 
was at Ahmed Khel, where the Afghan loss was estimated at 
1,200 killed. 




64 



PUNITIVE EXPEDITION IN THE 2 WAT VAUEY. 

CHAPTER XIII. 

THE MALAKAND FIELD FORCE. 

HROUGHOUT the week the greatest excitement 
prevailed in India, and news from the beleagured 
garrison was eagerly and anxiously awaited. 
There was distinct relief felt everywhere when it 
was known that the 11th Bengal Lancers with 12,000 rounds 
of ammunition had reached Malakand, which was in- 
creased when it was seen that troops were makiag forced 
marches up the Swat Valley. Oflficers were rushing back to 
their regiments from leave and the hill stations, and favorite 
hot weather resorts of India were rapidly being denuded of 
the military men. On the Saturday following the outbreak 
seven hundred infantry reached Colonel Meiklejohn, bringing 
with them 200,000 rounds of ammunition in addition to their 
own regimental supply, whilst another convoy, similarly sup- 
plied, arrived shortly afterwards. Still energy was kept up 
almost at straining point and efforts were made to quickly 
reinforce the artillery at the Malakand, two batteries being 
hastily pushed forward to aid the solitary No. 8 Bengal 
Mountain Battery which was at the fort. The weather 
was of the most trying character imaginable, and the great 
heat told largely amongst the men, the 35th Sikhs losing 
twenty-five men from apoplexy and sunstroke between Mardan 
and Dargai alone. 

Still the men were in the best of spirits, eager to push 
forward to join in the hot work which they knew and 
hoped was waiting for them on the heights of Malakand. The 
tales of gallant heroism had fired all ranks, and overcomiug every 
diflSiculty the relief force pursued its forced marching right 
into Malakand. 

Government lost no time in sanctioning the despatch of 
the Malakand Field Force, and on July 30th the following 
j)articalar8 were published :— 



65 

The Governor-General in Council sanctions Mip despatch. 
of a force, as detailed below, to be stvled the Malakand Field 
Force, for the purpose of holding the iSInlnkand and adjacent 
posts and operating against the neighbouring tribes as may be 
required : 

1. Formation of Force. — The force will be composed as 
follows : — 

1st Brigade. 
1st Battalion, Royal Weat Kent Regiment. 
24th (Punjab) Regiment of Bengal Infantry. 
3l8t (Punjab) Regiment of Bengal Infantry. 
45th (Rattray's Sikh) Regiment of Bengal InfaDtry. 
Sections A and B of No. 1 British Field Hospifcal. 
No. 38 Native Field Hospital. 
Sections A and B of No. 50 Native Field Hospital. 

2nd Brigade. 
Ist Battalion, East Kent Regiment. 
35tb (Sikh) Regiment of Bengal Infantry. 
38th (Dogra) Regiment of Bengal Infantry. 
Guides Infantry. 

Sections C and D of No. 1 British Field Ho.spilal. 
No. 37 Native Field Hospital. 
Sections C and D of No. 50 Native Tie' A Uospital. 

Divisional Troops. 

4 Squadrons, nth Regiment of Bengal Lancers C Prince of Walea* 
Owu ). 

1 Squadron, lOch Regiment of Bengal Lancers ('' Duke of Cam- 
In idge's Own"). 

Guides Cavalry. 

22nd Punjab Regiment of Bengal Infantry. 

2 Companies 2l8t Punjab Regiment of Bengal Infantry. 
10th Field Battery. 

6 Gnna No. 1 British Mountain Battery. 
G Guns No. 7 British Mountain Battery. 
(j Guns No. 8 (Bengal) Mountain Batter-w-. 



No. 5 Company, Madras Sappers and Miners. 
No. 3 Company, Bombay Sappers and Miners. 
Seclion 13 of No. 13, British Field Hospital. 
Sections A and B of No. 35 Native Field Hospital. 

Line of Communications. 

No. 34 Native Field Hospital. 

Section B of No. 1 Field Veterinary Hospital. 

3. Command and Staff— 

General Officer Commanding the Force Brigadier-General Sir Bindon Blood, 



{with the local rank of 
Qeneral) 
Aide-de-Cam'p 

Orderly Officer 



Assistant Adjutant-General 

Assistant Quartermanter-General ... 

Deputy Assistant Adjutant arid 
Quartermaster-General, Maluhand 

Deputy Assistant Quartermaster' 
ireneral (Intelligence) 

Eield Intelligence Officer 

Superintendent, Army Signalling ... 

Principal Medical OSicer ... 
Commanding Royal Engineers 

Commanding Royal Artillery 

Adjutant, Royal Artiliery ... 

Adjutant, Roffal Engineers 

Field Engineer ,,♦ „t •.. 



K.C.B. 

Captain A. B. Dunsterville, East 
Surrey Reginicnt. 

Captain A. E. Dick Personal Assist- 
ant to the Military Member of the 
Viceroy's Council. 

Major H. H. Bnrney, 1st Battalion, 
Gordon Highlanders. 

Lieutenant-Colonel A. Masters, 
Central India Horse. 

Captain A. B. H. Drew (vice Major 
Herbert, wounded in action). 

Captain H. E. Stanton, d.s.o., R.A. 

Captain H. F. Walters, 24tl) (Ba- 
luchistan) Regiment, Bombay In- 
fantry. 
Captain E. W. M. Norie, 2ud Bat- 
talion, Middlesex Regiment. 

Surgeon-Colonel G. -Thomson, c.b., 
I.M.S. 

Colonel J. E. Broadbent, R.E. (re- 
• placed by Lieuteuant-Culonel 

W. Peacock). 
Lieutenant-Colonel W. Aitken. c.b., 

R.A. 
Captain H. D. Grier, R.A. (replaced 

by Captain H. Ronse, R. A.) 
Captain H. J. Sherwood, R.E. 
Major E. Blunt, R.E. 



67 



Assistant Superintendent, Army Sig- 
nallivg 



Ai>fiistant Field Engineer 

Ai^sistant Field Engineer ... ... 

Field Treasure Chest Officer 

Orlnance Officer ... ... 

Chief Commissariat Officer ... 

Assistant to Chief Commissariat 
Officer 

Divisional Transport Officer... 

Aiisistant to Divisional Transport 
Officer 



Senior Veterinary Officer and Vete- 
rinary Inspector 
Survey Officer 
Piovost Marshal ... 



1st Beiga 



Chaplain 
Commanding .. 

Orderly Officer 



Dcpvfij Assistant Adjutant-General 

Deputy Assistant Quartermaster - 
General. 

Brignde Commissariat Officer 

Brigarle Transport Officer ... 

Pegi mental, Commissariat and 
Transport Officer 



Captaia J. C. Sutherland, l7th 
Bengal Cavalry (nfterwardg re- 
placed by I-ientenant H. E. 
Cotterill, Hoyal West Surrey and 
Lieutenant E. Christian, Royal 
Scots Fusiliers). 

Lieutenant C. M. F. Watkins, R.E. 

Lieutenant H. O. Lathbury,R. E, 

Lieutenant F. D. Grant, Military 
Accounts Department. 

Captain W. W. Cookson, R.A. 
Major H. Wharry, Assistant Com- 
missary. General. 

Lieutenant A. S. Cobbe, 32nd Pio- 
neers (afterwards replaced by 
Captain R. C; Lye, 23rd Pioneers). 

Captain C. G. R. Thackwell, Assist" 
ant Commissary-General. 

Captain F. H. Hancock, 2Gth Pun- 
jab Infantry (afterwards replaced 
by Captain A. W. V. Plunkett, 2nd 
Battalion, Manchester Regiment). 

Veterinary Captain H. T. W. Mann. 

Captain C. L. Robertson, R.E. 

Captain C. G. F. Edwards, 5th Pun- 
jab Cavalry. 

Rev. L. Kluch. 

DE Staff. 

Colonel W. H. Meiklejohn, C.B., 

C.M.G., with the temporary rank of 

Brigadier- General, 
Lieutenant C. R. Gaunt, 4th Dragoon 

Guards. 
Major E. A. P. Hobday, R.A. 
Captain G. F. H. Dillon, 40th Pa- 

thaus. 
Captain C. H. Beville, Deputy- 
Assistant Commissary-General. 
Captain J. M. Camilleri, t3th Bengal 

Infantry. 
Lieutenant R. Harman, 4th Sikhs 

(afterwards replaced by Lieutenant; 

J. Duncan, Royal Scots Fusiliers). 



68 

Assistant Superintendent, Army Sig- Captain E. V. 0. Hewitt, 1st Batta- 
nalling Hon, Royal West Kent. 

Protost Marshal Second Lioutcnant S. Morton, 24tb' 

Punjab Infantry. 
Veterinart* Oficer Yeterijiary Captain W. R. Walker. 

2nd Bkigauk Staff. 

Commanding BrljrM.lier-Geaeral P. D. Jeffreys, 

C.B. 

Orderly Oj^cer Lieutenant J. Byron, Koyal Arlillt-ry. 

Deputy Assistant Adjutant-General Major K. 0. F. LTaniikon, ist li^t- 

t;ilion, The Queen's Royal Wtst 
Surrey Regiment. 
Deputy Assistant Quar^ermasler- Major C. H. Puvvell, 2n(l Battalion, 

General ]sr, Gnrlvl.as. 

Brigade Commissariat Officer ... Captain G. .-N. Hawkins, Dej.uty 

As-istant Corntnissary-G<Mieral. 

Brigade Transport Officer Captain D. Baker, 2nd Bombay 

Grenadiers'. 
Regimental, Commissari'}t and Lieutenant G. C. Bro'.ke, 2ud Bat- 

TransfO'rt Officer talion, The Border R.^jjiment. 

A>isi.Hant Superintendent, Army Lieutenant W. H. Trevoi-, 1st Bat- 
Signalling , taiion, East Kent R<^j;inient. 

Provost ilamhal Captain F. Duncan, 23rd Punjab 

J n fan try. 

yeierinary Officer Vctr•l•iln^ry Lio^ttpnant J. \V. llndU- 

(afterwards replac-ed b> Veteiinary 
Lieutenant G. M. WiUiams). 

Fob Base an'D Li.ne of Oo.mmlnication. 

Ba»e Commandant (with the tcm-~\ 

porary rank of Culonel and pay f Lieutenant-Colonel V. A. Sclialcb, 
and status of Colonel on the I llth Bengal Infantry. 

8taff\ ) 

J?;.(# Officer at the Base Captain H. Scott, 2nd Battalion, Tbe- 

Royal Sussex Uegiment. 

Section Commandant ... ... Captain O. B. S. F. Shore, 18t)» 

Bengal l^ancery (replaced by Cap- 
tain Belli Bivar, BeliMJch IJorso). 

Koii-.^hfra Depot Command-ant, Brit ish Crtpthin II. D^E. Vallancey. 2nd 
Troopi'. Battalion, Argyll and Snth. rlaiitl' 

Highlander**. 

2\i'Wf')wra DepOt ComtnandantyXaiive Captain R. R. Reucon, Ibtli Bengal 
Troope, Infantry. 



69 

Bannu DeyCt Coininandant ... Captain J. E. L. Gibbs, Bedfordshhe 

Rogiment. 

BiUic Cvmniissnriat 0_!pcer Captm'n S. W. Lincoln, Assistant 

Conimissary-Gcneral. 
Asitisfaiit to Bane Co)nmt:<yayiat Lieutenant E. G. Vaugliiin, Deputy 
Ofice.f. Asfistiinr Conunissaiy-Gentr; L 

f Lieutenant R. S. \Ve^'tun, 2n<l Bai- 

I talion, Tlie AJancbciter Rc<;iuient. 

<r i ntr ) Lieatenant E. F. Jlacnaechten, lOtli 

' -^ j Lancers. 

i Lieiitciiant C, G. Leaves, Essex Re- 



General Sir Bindon Blood's appointment to tlie general 
command was received with universal satisfaction. There Lad 
been absolutely no time lest. General Blood, after inspecting the 
defences and seeing to the troops at Malakand, made a report 
to head-quarters which was in every way eulogistic of the 
admirable generalship which the defence force had shown during 
the trying week and of the gallantry and determination shown 
by all arms. He found all the arrangements made by Brigadier- 
General Meiklejohn admirable in every way, and the position 
absolutely secure. He described the spirit of the troops as 
excellent, all showing eagerness to be led against the enemy. 
He warmly praised th.eir soldieily bearing and keenness after 
the almost continuous fighting of the week, with little rest at 
night and exposure to sun during the day. 

The enemy suffered severely in the attempts to take iSfala- 
kand and Chnkdnra. Jt is understood that the Malakand was 
beld by about 2.500 troops, and that the Chakdara Fort had 
but a small garrison of oOO men. The dilTerence between the 
two posts is that Malakand is exposed and the troops 
have necessarily to scatter themselves over an extended area 
for camping purposes and possesses no forts, whereas at 
Chakdara the smaJl garrison, retired within its forts, was able 
to hold its own and to inflict nearly three times as ranch loss 
on the enemy as the force at Malakand with over eight times 
its strength could inflict. If the reported losses of the enemy 
at Malakand be correctly estimated, or even approximately so, 
the advantages of a strongly fortified post for exposed military 
outposts on the frontier JDecome very evident. That only 700 
of the enemy were slain during these long nights of almost 
hand-to-hand fighting, compares very unfavourably with the 



70 

2,000 or so who fell in trying to take the small post at 
Chakdara. 

A testimony to the value in defence of posts of the 
Maxim gun, if indeed one be now needed, is given by the 
record slaughter at Chakdara, where the weapon appears 
to have swept down the enemy in its hundreds, and to 
have preserved our bridge over the Swat river most 
effectively. That the supply of small-arm ammunition and 
artillery shell should have threatened to run cut is not so 
very wonderful, when consideration is given to the tremend- 
ous fire kept up all the time during the best part of a week ; 
but although reserve was even in excess what is ordinarily 
required to be kept in hand under like circumstances, the fact 
that there was actually a pinch to refill the arsenals in time, ivS 
a hint for the future guidance of our authorities in all similar 
cases. Further illustrations should not be necessary to prove 
that garrisons beyond the border should have ample ammunition 
at hand to enable them to hold out for much longer than they 
could be possibly called upon to do before help reaches them 
from India, and the possession of practically impregnable 
works which the troops can occupy would help out matters by 
rendering a well controlled fire always possible, which would 
not be the case at night where the enemy has practically no 
obstacle to his closing on the defences in the darkness. 



CHAPTER XIV. 



A PRECAUTIONARY MEASURE : RESERVE BRIGADE FORMED, 

OTHING was more remarkable about the outbreak 
in the Swat Valley than the extraordinarily sudden 
manner in which the tribesmen collected. Instead 
of the thousand or two which was first considered 
to be a fair estimate of the numbers in revolt, it was 
found that there were at least ten or twelve thousand under 




71 

arms on the hills to the north, the north-east and the 
sonih-west, as well as in the Swat Valley itself. This 
great gathering caused much anxiety, and in order to set aside 
the possibility of a reverse to our troops the Viceroy and his 
Council decided, early in August, on the immediate formation of 
a reserve Brigade, to be held in readiness to support the FieM 
Force under General Sir Bindon Blood should necessity arise. 
Much importance was attached to the rising of the Bunerwals, 
four sections of which there was good reason to believe were in 
the field against us. It was felt that every day's delay in put- 
ting forth our strength meant more adherents for the Mad 
Mullah, and a general rising of the Utman Kheis, Bunerwals, 
Kohistaois as well as Swatis might be a tough job even for 
a large force. 

The Bunerwals belong to the Yusaf section of the Yosaf- 
zai tribe, and comprise the Iliazai and the Malizai sub-divisions, 
and, as their name implies, they inhabit the Buner Valley. 
They first came into collision with the British Government 
during the Umbeyla campaign in I860, when they offered con- 
siderable resistance ; but eventually undertook to disband 
their armed force, to destroy Maika and to drive the dis- 
affected Hindustanis out of their country. Those engagements 
they carried out. In 1868, in 1877 and in 1884 they broke 
the peace again, raiding border villages, and on each occasion the 
only punishment inflicted was to make them rebuild what they 
had destroyed and the payment of fines. On the last occasion 
it seemed very probable that a military force would have had 
to be sent against the Fhinerwals, but they submitted without 
military measures being necessary. The other sub-divisions 
of the Yusaf section of Yusaf zais are the Ranizai, Isazai and 
Akazai, all of whom have g^ven much trouble in years gone by 
and with whom our account will yet have to be settled without 
a doubt. 

The Swatis are not a pure Pathan tribe, but are believed 
to be of Indian origin. They originally occupied the territory 
between the Hydaspes and Jallalabad ; but were gradual^ 
driven out by Afghan tribes, and the Yusafzais deprived them 
of Swat and Buner ; they accordingly crossed the Indus and 
settled at Alahi, Nandihar, Tikri, &c., during the sixteenth 
century. The Swatis of Alahi are a clan known as Thor, and 
their country is a mountainons region adjoining Kohistan and 



72 

toudiing Kagban. In years gone by they have given a good 
deal of trouble to the British Government. 

'Ihe following was the composition of the Reserve Bri- 
gade : — 

2nd Battalion, The Highland Light Infantry. 
1st Battalion, The Gordon Highlanders. 
21st (Pan jab) Regiment of Bengal Infantry. 
2ad Battalion, 1st Gurkha (Rifle) Regiment. 
6 Guns, 10th Field Battery, Royal Artillery. 
No. 3 Company, Bombay Sappers and Miners. 
No. 14 British Field Hospital. 
No. 45 Native Field Hospital. 
No. 1 Field Medical Dep6t. 

Commands and Staff. 

Commanding .., Brigadier-General J. H. Wodehouse, 

C.B., C.M.G., Royal Artillery. 

Orderly Offi.cer ... Captain R. J. G. Elkington, Royal 

Artillery. 

Deputy Assistant Adjutant- Oeneral Captain A. B. G. Kemball, 2nd Bat- 
talion, 5th Gurkha (Rifle) Regi- 
ment, 

Deputy AisUtant Quartermaster' Captain H. R. B. Donne, Ist Batta- 
Oeneral. lion, The Norfolk Regiment. 

Field Intelligence OJUcer (attached to Captain J. K. Tod, Vth Bengal 
Divisional Head-Quarters). Cavalry. 

Veterinary Officer. Veterinary Lieutenant T. W. Rudd. 

Brigade Coynmissariat Officer .,, Captain A. Mullaly, Deputy Assist- 

ant Commissary-General. 

Brigade Transport Officer ... ... Captain E. deY. Wintle, 15th Ben- 

gal Lancers. 
Riigimental Commissariat Transport Lieutenant H. I. Nicholl, 1st Batt^i- 
Offictr. lion. The Bedfordshire Regiment. 

Despite the heavy fighting which had been goiog on and 
the state of nnrest and revolt which prevailed along the Swat 
Valley generally, the mails were now again regularly carried 
from Nowshera to Malakand, accompanied by a guard from 
iMalakaiid to Chakdara. A (onya started from Nowshera im- 
mediately on the arrival of the mail train, and was timed to 
reach Malakand about 4 p.m. It left Malakand again at 5 and 



73 

the mails were delivered the SHine evening at Khar, Amandara 
find Cliakdara. Afrain tlie mail tongti left Cliakdara at 8 a.m., 
anivtd Malakaiid at 10-30, and Nowslicra at 5 p.m., in time to 
catch both the up and down trains. 

Such harmonious working under difficulties so real is a 
fine tribute to the efficiency of the arrangements. 

Since the outbreak at the Malakand the rush of traffic along 
the road between Nowshera and Malakand had been overwhelm- 
ing, and nothing but indomitable determination and complete- 
ness of arrangements ensured every thing being carried oat 
"with punctuality and without serious hitch. 

On the 10th August the troops had finished their trying 
march and were encamped in the cooler climes of Amandara, 
where they found the hill breezes and occasional showers a 
delightful change after the exhausting rigour of the plains' hot 
weather. Amandara lies on the left of the road and runs down 
nearly to the river. On the other side of the road there is a 
belt of trees half a. mile long, where it is shady and cool duiing 
the heat of the day. Horses and mules looked very well after 
their hard march. The 10th Field Battery suffered the most — 
nearly all their casualties occurring in the seven miles up from 
Dargai, and as they marched that day from Jalala to Khar, 
a distance of 25 miles, it was not to be wondered at ; but the 
animals were quickly recovering their condition, with the help 
of plenty of loot from the neighbouiing villages. 

At Amandara was the 1st Brigade, including the Guides 
Cavalry, the llth Bengal Lancers, the 10th Field, and the 1st 
and 7th ^Mountain Batteries, whilst the 2nd Brigade with ihe 
8th Native Mountain Battery ^vas at Khar. 

About this time there was a fear of foot and month disease 
breaking out among the bullocks, but stringent mcasui'es 
stamped this out fortunately. On the 10th the Aladand Jir(ja 
came in to Major Deane. They Avere very submissivo 
and returned pledged to bring in any Government property 
in their possession. This was thought to bo the 
end of the Malakand disturbances. It was reported that 
the Ranazai had sent in a peace deputation to the Political 
Officer at the Malakand. The tribes about Panjkora were 
reported quiet and the local excitement appeared not to 
have extend(>d On Augu.<t 5th, the Khan of Dir came in and 



74 

saw the Political Officer, who lepotted that the interview was 
satisfactory, and that the Khan promised the punishment of his 
subjects who took part in the attack. Many standards and guns 
captured on the 2nd were being brought in to camp. Plenty 
of grain and fodder also was obtained in the deserted villages. 

On the 7th, at 5 a.m.. General Jeffreys reconnoitred 
several villages west of Jolagram and west of Khar with the 
35th Sikhs and Guides Infantry, four guns No. ] British 
Mountain Battery, and a small body of cavalry. The inhabi- 
tants had all fled, except one man who was wounded with a 
broken leg and arm, and who was brouojht into Malakand 
Hospital. Much Government and other property looted from 
the North Camp was found. The Political Officer reported 
that the Mad Mullah tried to raise Shanazai villages north- 
east of Chakdara on the night of the 5th, but failed. 

By the 11th all spare transport and supplies had been 
shifted from Malakand hence to Khar, and the Malakand was 
receiving a thorough cleaning. The field post offices had 
commenced working*. The general health of the troops was 
excellent. 

All was quiet again on the 12th ; Colonel Lamb had his leg 
amputated the previous day : the Rontgen Rays having failed, 
owing to some injury having occurred to the apparatus on its 
way up. The thigh bone was found to have been completely 
shattered. Later came the news that he died on Sunday night. 
He is the tenth officer we had lost since the first shot was fired 
at Maizar on the iOth June; in addition we had had eighteen 
wounded. The late Major John Lamb, temporary Lieutenant- 
Colonel in command of the 2'ith Punjab Infantry, saw active 
service in Afghanistan in 1879-80 and in the Zhob Valley 
expedition in 1890, and on both occasions was mentioned in 
despatches. 

Reliable information was received that after a jirga at 
Takht-a-band, the Bunerwals, with the Hindustani fanatics, 
together with men from Chamla and the Khuddn Khel and 
Jadun, started for Swat on the 9th. Two sections, however, of 
the Bunerwals had refused to join, so it was thought improbable 
that many Bunerwals would come down Chamla, as ^he valley 
leading to Umbeyla Pass is called. 



75 

On the IBth the Upper Swatis, on tfee right banc on 
tlie river, sent in representative jirgas to ofetain terms. The 
Lower Swatis surrendered unconditionally, and were allowed 
to return to their villages. All this pointed to a quiet settle- 
ment taking place. 

Accordingly there was much delight on the part of our 
troops when on the 11?th it was known that orders had been re- 
ceived for a forward move into Upper Swat. As the news 
spread from regiment to regiment, it was received with ringing 
cheers. On every hand there was rejoicing at the prospect 
of a speedy move forward, and Amandara Camp was quite 
merry with the bustle of getting carriage, drawing rations, 
getting rid of extra baggage and other odds and ends, 
Ti'hich so mysteriously collect during a period of in- 
action. As the country in which the force was to operate was 
only suitable for mule carriage, all impedimenta was reduced to 
the lowest possible limits; tbe amount of mule transport with 
tlie force being very limited. The force was to consist of about 
3,500 rifles and sabres, whilst every endeavour was to be made 
to carry 12 days' rations, which gave the General Officer Com- 
manding a pretty free hand. 

On the 14th General Blood himself joined the special 
force, the Divisional troops attached to it coming under his 
direct command from the fifteenth. While General Blood was 
away, General Jeffreys commanded the force left behind. 

Even the weather seemed to favour the advance, for the 
rain, which had fallen nearly every day, and which delayed the 
advance at least one day, curiously enough had left the valley, 
narrow as it is, severely alone, and bivouacking was thus not 
unpleasant. 

On August 16th the 1st Brigade left at 5-30 a.m. 
for Thana, full tents and baggage being taken as far as that 
place. The force consisted of the -whole of the troops, at 
Amandara, viz. : — 

The West Kent Eegiment. 
34th Punjab Infantry. 
31st Punjab Infantry. 
45th Sikhs. 



76 

With the following Divisional troops :— 
10th Field Battery. 
No. 7 British Mountain Battery. 
No. 8 Bengal Mountain Battery. 
5th Company, Madras Sappers and Miners. 
6 Squadrons from the Guides Cavalry, 
11th Bengal Infantry. 

Tli3 whole valley of Swat was beautifully green, alt.liough 
ifc had not had much of the previous rain. The river was iu 
full flood and split up as it is into many channels rauuing" 
between emerald strips of land, it looked highly picturesque. 

Simultaneously with the advance of the 1st Brigade to 
Thana, a small force fiom ]\Iardan was directed to proceed to 
Rustum, one march towards the Bunerwals. This was a 
gentle hint to them to remain quiet during our visit to 
Upper Swat Valley, into which many passes exist from the 
Buner country. This force was in command of Brigadier- 
General J. H. Wodehouse and consisted of one squadron 10th 
Bengal Lancers (under command of Captain W. L. Maxwell), 
the Highlpvud Light Infantry, No. 3 Company, Bombay Sappers 
and Miners, and two sections No. 14 British Field Hospital. 



CHAPTER XV. 



A BRILLIANT ACTION : THE BATTLE OF LANDAKAI, 

N the morning our troops were going to knock at the 
'' gate of Swat " as Landakai has been termed : indeed 
it is a very strong position. The camp at Thana. 
was in the middle of an open plain, well away from 
the hills and about four miles from Landakai, where th<^ 
enemy was expected to show fight. The road from the camp 
to Landakai runs around the nortiicrn edo-e of tlio villa<re of 



*!')•;» I. a :ni(l thence dose lo lulls on tlie right until the 
vill;«!.ro oi Jalala is resiehcd, \vh ere the road passes betweca 
that \ illage and the end of a spui. covered with Buddhist 
ruir.s and running up to a peak which dominates tlie 
>vhole Landjikai position. Between the Jalahi spur and 
Lnndakai is first an open valley about 900 yards wide at 
the lower end, then another spur, tlion a deep ravine 
una finally the main Landakai spur ending in clitTs over- 
hanging the Swat River; the road, being carried round these 
clift's for nearly a mile on a stone causeway, which, as General 
Biood was con'ccily informed, the ei;emy i;ad damaged and 
obstructed in various ways. Beyond the Landakai spur, as 
(icnoral Blood knew from a reconnaissance made by Major 
S. B. Beafson, Uth BeMgal Lancers, the valley is open, and 
the rice cultivation lies in such a way that the enemy, in 
occupying the lowei end of the Landakai spur, vvonld find 
bimself formed to the left fl;ink of his lino of retreat. During 
the reconnaissance on the evening of the 11th, some hun- 
dreds of the enemy with flags were seen occupying sangnrs, 
spread orer a mile or so of the end of Landakai spar, and 
holding an old Buddhist Fort on a peak, where they evi- 
dently fancied themselves very securely posted. From their 
general appearance, their shouting, and their expenditure of 
iimmuuition, General Blood judged that larger numbers were 
beliind what he saw, and he accoidinijly returned to camp, 
making as little show of force as possible, and issued orders 
for the next day. 

On the morning of August 17th General Bindon Blood 
ivith his force cleared out at daybreak from Thana, bent upon 
attacking the enemy. They had scarcely cleared the village of 
Thana before the heights above Jalala and Landakai were seen 
to be crowned by masses of the enemy distributed along the 
ridges, as on the preceding evenimz. The force moved steadily 
up to the foot of the long spur which runs down towards the 
Swat River from the range on the right, and fight soon com- 
menced. There was general jubilation when it was seen that 
the enemy really intended to otl'er some resistance, aikd that 
the expectations of the Political Otficers that the peofde would 
otTer uo opposition were being falsified. 

Punctually at 6-:}0 a.m. the cavalry of the advanced ouaid 
moved off and pushing on to Jalala. found a ilv/ oI the euemj 



78 

established in the Baddliisfc rnins on the adjacent spor. These 
they held in check with the assistance of the infantry of the 
advanced guard, which consisted of two companies, l«t 
Battalion, Royal West Kent Regiment, under Captain W. R. 
Marshall, 2nd Derbyshire Regiment, attached 1st Royal West 
Kent Regiment, until the arrival of the remainder of tke 
battalion which headed the main body. Then the battalioD, 
under Major C. W. H. Evans, extended and crowned the Jalala 
spur, clearing the enemy out of the Buddhist rains before 
mentioned. 

The position occupied by the enemy, who numbered 5,000 
men with 150 standards, was a grassy ridge from above the 
causeway to near Jalala to the east of Nalbnnda, a^d 
their greatest force was seen to be above the causeway. Tfie 
West Kent had the honor of commencing the attack and to 
them was allotted the task of driving back skirmishers frOBi 
the small spar in front. Shortly came along Major M. F. Fegan, 
R.A., with No. 7 (British) Mountain Battery, reinforcing the 
West Kents in the most effective manner. This battery im- 
mediately made the position of the enemy an exceedingly warm 
one, the accuracy of the practice and the effect being remarkable. 
In his admirable gun work Major Fegan received much assis- 
tance from No. 10 (Bengal) Mountain Battery, ^which was down 
on the plain below, having come up to their position over ground 
which was ver}' difficult for wheeled artillery. 

The withering effect of the guns seemed to paralyse the 
enemy. For a space they held to their position in a bewildered 
sort of fashion, but realising, after two or three rounds of 
effectively placed shells, that they possessed ev€ry disadvantage 
and little that was of value to themselves by staying where 
they tvere, they diplomatically moved away behind sangars 
discreetly erected slightly behind the west of the ridge. Prom 
here the standards were still to be seen flaunting deBance, 
and this they were able to do without much result for a 
wirile, as the shells, if they did not catch the top of the 
sangars f fell harmlessly over. Once the enemy took to the 
sangars it is doubtful whether our guns did very much havoc, 
allhoagh in several cases some admirable practice was made 

Meanwhile the main attack under Brigadier-General Meik- 
lejohn was developed on the right, the 24th Punjab Infantry 



79 • 

supported by the 31st Punjab Infantry under Major J. G. Ram- 
say and IJ.'uteuant-Colonel J. L. O'Bryen respectively witli the 
4otli Sikh.s under Colonel H. A. Sawyer in reserve, ^vorked 
their way up the hill to within 500 yards of the crcfit line, 
where they opened a heavy fire on the position. By this 
time No. 8 Bombay Mountain Battery commanded by Captain 
A. H. C. Bitch, R. A., had joined the firing line and came into 
aclioaat a lange of about 500 yards. 

Now tiie place was being made altogether too hot for the 
moolkie^, and the stubborn resistance which our troops were 
so anxious to meet with was not offered to the advance up the 
hill. The • moral " if not the actual effect of the guns, coupled 
with the di termined advance of our troops had taken all the 
fighting out of the tribesmen, and as our gallant men surmounted 
thesummi; of the ridge, they were seen in full retreat. Wheeling 
to the left 'Jolouel Meiklejohn's forces swept the west of the 
hill for a little distance, and were shortly joined by the West 
Kents. All was energy and determination. A small stone 
tower or fort at a range of 600 yards was played upon by No. 8 
Mountain Battery and ten minutes of this sufficed to give the 
West Kents the opportunity they desired, to rush the position. 
The flags which the enemy had shown there a few minutes 
before gave the Men of Kent the hope of active work in the 
sangar, but the enemy had decamped before they got there. It 
was seen that there was no fight in the enemy, and although 
as a kind of recompense for their more or less fruitless rush on 
the sangar, the West Kents got a few stragglers, the main 
body of the tribesmen could be seen streaming across the 
plain in the direction of Butkhela, their hasty retreat being 
accelerated by the guns of No. 8 Mountain Battery at long 
range. We were now in possession of the ridge, and so far 
not a man on our side had been killed — five wounded sepoys 
indeed comprising the total casualty list. The work^ of tfee 
infantry had been more or less finished, and here, if never 
before, was the opportunity for cavalry. 




80 
CHAPTER XVI. 

TTTE RIDE OF THE GCIDES : HOW BRITISH OFFICERS DIE. 

I^L this time tlie Guides had remained inactive, 
waiting anxiously for tlie opportunity which they 
knew must come, and for which the General 
liad kept them together under Lieutenant-Colo- 
nel Adams. Up to now a narrow causeway com- 
manded by the enemy's fiie had been an obstacle to their 
passing around the edge of the ridge into the plain beyond, 
but when the trii)t'smen had been forced by the battery to 
evacuate this position, the 5th Company, Queen's Own Sappers 
and Minors, nndei- Captain E. P. Johnson, R.E., and under the 
direction of Major Riant, H.E., the Senior Royal P]ngineer Officer 
present, soon made tlie causeway fit for the cavalry advance. 
Rut valuable time had been lost in this necessary delay. 

Now fiom the hills above the famous guerrilla corps was 
Feen rapidly advuTicing after the fugitives, who were fast 
I'caching the shelter where they would be safe. The re- 
treating tribesmen had reached a point about a mile beyond 
the village of Kotah, and were already close under the hills. 
'J'owards this village the Guides advanced, and they were seen 
to be moving rapidly over the ground. When through the 
village the Guides broke into a gallop. Their attempts to 
intercept the fugitives, however, was bound to be unsuccessful. 
Heavy rice 'fields had to be ridden through and these told 
on the horses — never of the best in the Guides. 

It was shortly that occurred an incident which sent a thrill 
ihiough the length and breadth of India when it became known 
— the deaths of Licntenjuits R.T. Greaves and H. L. S. MacLean. 
Accounts differ somewhat as to what actually occurred. The 
most probable stoiy, however, is that in the excitement of the 
stern and unavailing chase a few, better mounted than the 
rest, singled themselves out from their comrades, and when gal- 
loping between the village of Kawa Kila and the Hills they fell 
into an ambush. Captain H. T. E. Palmer commandf'd the 
leading squadron and it pushed right on into the fields <>t 
Jiigh Indian corn at the end of the causeway. Wit hunt 



81 

warning tliey came out right under the fire of five hundred 
of the enemy, who were on the side of the hills and within 
one hundred yards range. The fire was deadly and in the 
first onset Captain Palmer's horse was shot. It is admittedt 
that Lieutenant Greaves and Captain Palmer were at the 
head of the pursuing party, and at this point it is stated thafc 
Greaves' horse ran away with him riglit among the enemy, by 
whom he was shot. 

The tribesmen ran out and cut down Greaves, whilst 
previous to this Palmer had been slashed across the wrist by 
a standard-bearer whom he managed in turn to cut down. 

The position for our brave officers was a desperate one. 
The enemy were crowding around. They had seen the British 
Officer fall and it revived their plack. Bat Colonel Adams 
and Lord Fincnstle were close behind, and they galloped 
right into the mid<st of the crowd of Ghazis who were 
collected around the bodies of Greaves and Palmer. Both 
Colonel Adams and Lord Fincastle had seen Palmer and 
Greaves attacked, bat before they could get up Greaves ha,d 
alreg-dy had one haml cnt off and received other sword cuts. 

This was the work of a few seconds, and as the two officers 
came dashing into the enemy they were greeted with a volley of 
rifle shots. Lord Fincastle had his horse shot when close up 
and the scabbard of his sword was also carried away by a bullet. 
He fell close by the body of poor Greaves, He was not 
wounded, however, and with Colonel Adams made a desperate 
effort to lift Greaves on to the Colonel's horse and get him 
away. Poor Greaves, however, was again shot through the 
body whilst Lord Fincastle was trying to lift him up and died 
almost immediately. 

The two British were now facing a determined enemy at 
close quarters, and unless help came quickly their fate was 
assured. Twenty yards away were any number of rifles and the 
chances of escape were nil. Then it was that gallant Mac Lean 
rode up with his few scu-ars, and threw himself and his men right 
into the thick of the fray. The struggle was sliort and bloody. 
Around the bodies of their comrades these British OflBcers and 
Indian sowars fought grimly with the host of fanatical Ghuzis. 
Desperate as the struggle wos, it seemed at first as if it was 
going to be successful. The gallant band recovered the lifeless 



82 

body of poor Gt'eaves and successfully removed it away, whilst 
Colonel Adams placed it on one of the sowar's horses. 

Then they dashed in again at the foe and gallant MacLean 
■was shot through both thighs. He fell into the midst of 
the bloody arena, and bled to death almost immediatel}'. 
Colonel Adams had his horse shot, but gathering his little 
party together ODce more they nobly dashed in, and after a hard 
struggle brought away the bodies of their brother officers. In 
this last rush, Colonel Adams was slightly wounded. Mean- 
while more of the Guides had come up and their fire helped 
to keep the enemy in check. Having rescued their dead 
the cavalry now retired into a neighbouring tope of trees 
which they defended until relieved by some infantry and 
No. 8 Mountain Battery. The appearance of the guns forced 
a hasty retreat, and shortly after the operations of the day 
closed. 

Those watching from the heights speak of the ride of the 
Guides as magnificent, whilst the conduct of officers and 
men when they fell into ambush was worthy of the high 
reputation of the famous veterans of the Punjab Frontier 
Force. 

Lieutenant R. T. Greaves belonged to the Lancashire 
Fusiliers, which is now at Quetta, and received his com- 
mission in May 1891. His keenness for service had led 
him to go to the front on leave from his regiment, 
and whilst up there he acted as war correspondent to 
several Indian papers. He was a promising yonng ofScer, 
devoted to his profession, and his death was a great blow to 
all his comrades. 

There is something peculiarly sad in the deaths of 
Lieutenants Greaves and MacLean, and nothing throughout 
the present operations on the frontier caused more general and 
widespread sorrow. 

MacLean, of the Guides, was a well known figure. Ho 
was one of the best and most dashing officers of the Guides, 
popular with all good soldiers, and at the time he met with 
his death he was acting adjutant of the regiment. Only a 
little Avhile before he bud been at ISlalakand, fighting gallantly 
with the defending force against the same foe, by whom he 
was shot through the cheek, and it was only his keenness foif 



83 

the batUe field which carried him into the second affair almoisfc 
direct from hospital. The Guides keenly feel his loss. Poor 
MacLeau's body was carried to Mardan and was buried where 
most, if uot all, of the gallant dead of the Guides rep'ose. 
Greaves' remains were escorted into Malakand and were buried 
with full military honours in the Malakand cemetery, all officrT-s 
of tlie garrison attending. 

The death or these officers was the melancholy feature oi 
nn otherwise cheaply won victory, although undoubtedly death 
as it met them both, on the field of battle, was undoubtedly 
that which they would themselves have desired. Still even the 
British army, with its proud records of unselfish devotion and 
bravery, can ill afford to lose such noble sons. The general 
feeling of grief was well expressed in the following lines by a. 
friend of MacLean's, which appeared in the Civil and Military 
Gazette, " In memoriam" : — 

Hold fast your tears : this is no time to weep. 

Tears are the meed of death, that incomplete 
Cuts down the flower, ere yet the hue doth peep 

From out the velvet bud's sheath. Tears are meet 
For ship- wrecked lives a&d deaths that bring an end 

To barren hopes., to want, disease, to shame. 
So hold your tears. For he, MacLean, your friend, 

Died not as frost-nipp'd bud, an empty name. 
Nor yet in hopes unfruitful. Want, disease 

Or shame had never sullied the fair page 
Of that brave vigorous life. From weeping cease. 

Lo ! the wild foe to wonder turn'd from rage. 
As self -forgetful on to death he hurl'd, — 

True to his Corp?, a Guide to all the world. 

The bravery of the Colonel of the Guides and of Lord 
Kincastle will, it is to be hoped, receive some special mark of 
recognition. If ever the man was played under trying circum- 
stances it was around the bodies of the three British Officers 
who were cut down by Ghazis at Landakai. With bullets 
hailing around them and with a malignant enemy stubbornly 
contesting a hand to hand battle, the fight was continued 



84 

until the object was attained and the iinmutilated bodies of 
tlie British Officers were borne away. 

. It was a graceful tbonghtfalness and fully in accord with 
public sentiment which moved Sir Bindon Blood to attach Lord 
Fincnstle to tho Guides Cavalry as a mark of recognition of 
his p^allant behavioar, and it is even more pleasing to know that 
Sir Biiidon Blood has forwarded a communication to His Ex- 
cellency the Commander-in-Chief givine: full details, for his 
special consideration, of a truly gallant feat at arms. 

In the morning fighting the enemy's loss was estimated 
at one hundred killed, of whom the West Kents claimed at 
least a third. On oar side there were few casualties other 
than those already mentioned. The Guides had three sepoys 
slightly wounded (besides losing many horses killed and 
wounded) the 24th Punjab Infantry, the 45th Sikhs and the 
3 1st Punjab Infantry had each one sepoy wounded. Altogether 
onl}' eleven of our side were killed and wounded of whom four 
were officers. 

The Brigade encamped at Kotah that night. A 1 11 A.M. just; 
as the enemy had been cleared of the .Jallala ridge, news 
came from 'J'haua that 1,000 men with several flags were near 
the jMorah pass and appeared to threaten the camp. These 
may have been the people left on General Meiklejohn's right, 
and as they had been untouched by him vrere particularly ph as- 
ed with themselves and were beating drums and dancing about : 
but they very soon moved off when Major F. G. Delamain openedf 
fire on them with two dismounted squadrons of theXlth Bcnoaf 
Ijancers and accounted for twenty killed. In every way the 
day had been a bad one for the tribesmen, and their failh iu 
the mad Fakir's omnipotence must have received a rnde shock. 

The resistance which was shown at Landakai gave pro- 
mise of yet further collisions with the evasive enemy, and as the 
weather was favourable to camping out and appeared likely to 
continue so, our men were in good spirits. 



nV 



^ 



C^, 



CHAPfER XVir. 



A "POr.IT[CAL WAL'v OVER" IX SWAT VALLRY. 

.,^\^\ S M mnroli of tlie Field Force np tiio Swat Viil'ry was 
,^f(t one of great interest to all who took part in it. The 
^1 greatre part of the country travelled over was pre- 
I viously quite unknown to EuiopeaiiB except from the 

reports of natives, and the map compiled frona various 
sources by the Intelligence Branch, althouf;!! in the main correct 
as to names and intermediate distances, proved to be consider- 
ably out as regards the general direction of the v^ley, which 
keeps a mote easterly bearing than had been estimated. 
Prom Ohakdara the valley runs straight, general direction 
E.-N,-E., as far as Barikot, a distance of some 12 miles, when it 
tarns sharply almost due north for a short way, and then 
again resumes its easterly bearing running about N.-B. for some 
20 miles. Numerous side streams join the Swat at various 
points, and the whole valley is of wonderful fertility — at this 
time of year green with luxuriant crops of growing rice and 
Indian corn. Villages are thickly scattered along each side 
of the main stream, and around them are the invariable grave- 
yards, shaded by groves of trees, which form such a character- 
istic feature in the scenery of this part of the world, i^umerous 
remains of Buddhist dv/pas, monasteries and other buildings 
are passed which would afford an interesting field for investiga- 
tion to the archteologist. Most of these remains are of great 
iintiquity, as is proved by the writings of the Chinese traveller 
Hiuen-Tsiang, who ascended this valley some 1,400 years ago. 

Farther up the valley the scenery becomes wilder and more 
mountainous. The hills, which rise to heights of 3,000 or 
4,000 fedt above the river bed, become mere rugged and bolder 
in outline, while the snows of the Kohistan are seen towering 
in the far distance. These rise to altitudes of 16,000 or 17,000 
feet and form a fine background to the vista of the river 
•winding sluggishly along through its green level valley bounded 
on either side by bare rocky hills on which the pines begin 
to show themselves at elevations of 4,000 to 5,000 feet. 

The furthest point reached by our cavalry reconnaissance 
on|the 21st August from Miugaora (the present capital) was 



S6 

Gutibcagli, abouL 12 miles Ligher up, wliere a halt was made on 
the summit; of a small eminonce 'opposite to the junction of 
the Arnawai river with the Swat. From here the view extend- 
ed some 5 or 6 miles further, beyond Avhich point the river 
appears fo trend in a more northerly direction towards the 
Kohistan or hill-country proper — the valley itself still fertile 
and thickly populated. Between Mincjaora and this point the 
village of Manglaor was passed : this was the former capital 
and is surrounded by numerous Buddhist remains. Here, and 
for a few miles higher up, the valley widens, instead of narrow- 
ing as was expected, and broad stretches of cultivation are 
found on both sides of the Swat. 

The reconnaissance to the Karakar pass on the 25th 
August lifted the purdah of another hitherto unexplored 
country. This pass leads from Barikot in the vSwat Valley 
into the Salarzai portion of Buner and is one which is much 
used for the export of grain, &c., from Upper Swat southwards 
to Rustum and other Indian marts. The pass is nn easy one 
some 4,500 feet in height above the sea level, and from its 
summit a fine view is obtained of this portion of Buner. The 
general character of the country appears to be similai' to Swat, 
that is to say, a mountainous country with wide level riverbeds 
which are fertile and hio-hly onltivated. Immediately below 
the pass is an open valley at tins tim-e green with growing crops, 
drained by a stream which makes its way thron.Qh . a break in 
the hills into a larger valley beyond. ]\[ountains rise in the 
background beyond which lies the Indus, and on the hither 
side a river of cocisiderable size (the Barundu) is seen windinoj' 
its way south and oast through a broad fertile valley. This 
country was scanned with interest by our officers as they saw 
in it possibly the scene of future frontier operations unless 
the Bunerwal improves his ways. 

All the new country was of a highly interestinor character^ 
The Swat Valley maintains the same astonishing fertility 
throughout, and the yearly output of ^rwin must be something 
enormons : indeed the value of the* export trade over the 
Malakand alone amounts to some 80 or 40 lakhs of rupees 
annually, while large quantities also are known to be carried 
over the Karkar and other passes. The principal crops are 
Indian corn, wheat, barley and rice. 



SI 



THE mSSmS OF THE MGHtVlAS^'DS. 

CHAPTER XVIII. 

INVASION" OF lU'JTISII TKiJlUTOirr. 

Lil^'HEN interest in +"he punitive racasures against 
Vjp the tribesmen in the Tochi Valley was fast dying 
^ away the siege ot" the garrisons at Malakand and 
<t> Chakdar acted as a refresher. In like case when 

the reliefs of the beleaguered garrisons having 
been snccessfnlly carried ont, Sir Bindon Blood's brigade 
occnpied itself with marching along the Swat Valley in 
pursuit of an elusory adversary and eyes were once more 
being turned from our north-west frontier, there came the 
startling news that the recalcitrant tribesmen had brriken 
out in a fresh place and had invaded British territory near 
Peshawar. Never befoi'e in the annals of the Britisfi in India 
has such a daring move been made hy the tribesmen. The 
public mind which had been deeply concerned over the disturb- 
ances in the'Tochi and Swat Valleys, became distinctly appre- 
hensive when the disorder spread to Peshawar. The first 
information received by the general public was the newspaper 
intimation that, at about four o'clock in the afternoon of 
Saturday, August 7th, soine four or five thousand Mohmands 
had attacked the fort of Shabkadar and that the P»order 
Police who garrisoned it had been successful in repulsing 
them with great los's to the enemy. Previous to attacking the 
Fort, however, it appeared that the raiders, who were under 
the leadership of the notorious Mullnh of Hadda, or Hadda 
Mullah, as he is •familiarly known, had first of all descended 
upon the Hindu village of r>hankargarh, which is the bazar 
of Shabkadar, on muider and plunder bent. 

Fortunately for the villagers the advance of this formid- 
able horde had been heralded, and before the wild Mohmands 
arrived the villagers had hurried pell mell into Shabkadar 
Fort, where they were sheltered by the garrison. Only two 
or three men, apparently disbelieving any hostile intentions on 
the part of the Mohmands, remained in Shankargarh, and these 



88 

paid tlie penalty of their lack of credality with their lives. 
Had private warning uot reached the village in time to 
enable tlie irdiabitants to fly, it is almost certain that the 
tribesmen who had taken to the war path, would first have 
whetted tlieir appetites on the defenceless Hindus and Sikhs 
of Shaakargarh. Baulked of its prey the marauding gang 
set fire to the village and then made an attack on the Fort in 
which they are believed to have lost fifty killeii. 

Shabkadar Fort itself was built by the Sikhs. It stands 
on a mound and has walls fifty feet high, so is praetically 
impregnable to any force without artillery. Shankargarli 
was an old Sikh Cantonment bazar and it is inhabited chiefly 
by rich Hindu money-lenders, who have had very profitable 
dealings with the tribesmen on both sides of the border, 
distant only three miles away. Shabkadar was held by forty 
or fifty men of the Border Police. 

Immediately on the news becoming known there was 
much indignation expressed that such a formidable gathering 
could assemble on our Borders and actuail}- invade our terri- 
tory find outrage a people under British protection without any 
previous cognisance of hostile intention on the part of our poli- 
tical officers. Information from Peshawar showed beyond 
a doubt that for two or three days before the raid was actually 
made, it was known that an ominous collection of tribesmen 
was going on-in the neighbourhood of Fort Shabkadar. This 
is only eighteen miles from Peshawar, and it was undoubtedly 
the general feeling of press and public alike that our civil 
authorities, with the influence and esjDionage they exert, should 
have satisfied themselves regarding the truth or otherwise 
of these rumours. It was known, days before the raid occurred, 
that the Hadda Mullah was busily stirring up the Mohmands ; 
the Hindu himuuihs at Slmnkargarh had information at least 
a week beforehand of the impending trouble, and several of 
them took the precaution of moving in to Peshawar itself. Even 
before the Mohmands appeared, rumours that they were abroad 
were not lost on everybody, and it was suggested to the Civil 
authorities that troops might be moved oat as a precaution 
towards the border. Had this simple step been taken the 
Mohmands v.'Ould not have been able to boast of having burnt 
a bazar w^ithin eighteen miles of Peshawar and have gaijied 
the iufluence and prestige which accrues froni such a dar.'^^ 



80 

net. All this, as the Indian press unanimously at the time 
)«oiult J out, goes to show that there is urgent need for more 
I'orethought and better organised intelligence among the officers 
who are sup])osed to make it their business to be en rafport 
with what is happening on the borderland. It is idle to say- 
that no one can foresee these things. ' If the Hindu bunniahs can 
get accurate information, the political and civil officers should 
be able to obtain it too, or should retire to posts more suited to 
their capacities and make way for others more adroit. 

Before dealing with what followed the Mohmand raid, it 
will be interesting to cast a glance at the wild and uncnltared 
people who set at naught the authority of the British h'nj and 
flounted defiance into the face of the Sirkar. The great 
Mohmand tribes hold the hills north-west of Peshawar right 
down to the Khyber pass, and owe a loose allegiance to the 
Amir of Kabul, though also politically connected with us. 
The country of the Mohmands is divided naturally into two 
parts, the rich alluvial lands along the bank of the Kabul 
River from Jellalabad to Lalpura, and the country to the east 
of Lalpura consisting of a net work of hills and valleys. The 
principal of the latter are the valleys of Shilman, Gandao and 
Pandiali. They are, as a rule, dry and arid water-courses, 
raging torrents in heavy rain, but usually presenting a stony 
and shingly bed, from which slopes of barren ground lead to 
the rocky spurs and ranges that flank them. As the Durand 
•boundary runs from Landi Kotal eastwards of Lalpura and 
then along the watershed separating the basins of the Kunar 
and Panjkora Rivers, the most considerable portions of the 
country are within the British zone. We pay some of their sec- 
tions small subsidies for keeping an alternative to the Khy- 
ber route open, that latter route being sometimes closed when 
the tribes safeguarding it arc fighting amongst themselves. 
The independent Mohmands — for some sections are British 
subjects settled in the Peshawar district — are a stror.g turbu- 
lent people, with a fighting strength of about 16,000. The 
Baizai account for one-half of these. They hold the eastern 
part of the couTity adjacent to Bajour and the Utman Khel 
border. The Mohmands have never been accounted an enemy 
of much importance in the various conflicts with our troop.-j, 
and in 1880 they made but a poor resistance when some 5,000 
of them, who had crossed the Kabul River near Dakka, were 
attacked by a column 850 strong under Colonel Boisragon. 



90 

On a previous occasion, iu 1879, a small detachment of 170 
meu of tlie Mbairwarrah Battalion, under Captain O'Moore 
Creagh, succes.sfnlly held a position near Kane Dakka against 
several thousand Mohmands who attacked for six hours. This 
was one of the most brilliant little actions on the Kliyber side 
durino- the whole Afghan War. They vreie until lately marau- 
ders and robbers by inclination and circumstance, and peaceful 
only when afraid or bought over. Their nearest sections were 
punished by us in 1851, in 1852, and again in 1854, but none 
of those forays or expeditions led to any result. They 
continued their raiding and kidnapping outrages as before, their 
obi'ect being to force us into restoring to their leaders certain 
/tf/jiVs or revenue-free land assignments in British territory, 
which had been confiscated be(tause of their misconduct. In 
1857 their tardy preparations for a holy war against us were 
cut short by the fall of Delhi, and the consequent certainty 
that the infidel English would continue to rule India. In 
1863 the ferment amongst the tribes, caused by our difficulties 
a<- Ambela and the despatch of the "fiery cross" far and wide, 
emboldened the Mohmands to venture down into the plain 
nearly 6,000 strong, when they were charged again and again 
bv 450 of our native cavalry ar.d easily scattered. In 1879-80, 
during our war with the Afghans, a force of 12,000 I^Iohmands 
and Bajouris attempted to close the Khyber Pass against us, 
but were so roughly handled by the few troops avuilable to 
oppose them that each gathering was dispersed with tlie great- 
est ease. The Mohmands were in 1893 divided between tim 
Amir and the Government of India. Those westward of the 
watershed between the Kunar and Panjkora Rivers have been 
definitely recognised as inside Afghanistan, those eastwards 
of that as yet uudemarcated line being within the political 
frontier of India. The delineation, says Mr. Thorhurn in his 
"Asiatic Neighbours," is geographically good but ethnically bad. 
Like the tribesmen of Tochi and the Swat Valleys the 
ISlohmandis notorious for cowardice, as the Kamdakka affair of 
1879 clearly showed. The Mohmands have been branded as 
treacherous and cowardly, the Tarakzai procuring women 
(Cliitralis ?) for the Adam Khel Afridis, and are assisted in 
this slave trade, which does exist, by the foreign clans — Bajauris, 
Swatis, Bunerwals and Utman Khel tribes. Probably we are 
misinformed in making the first part of the accusation against 
them, at any rate we said the same till lately of the men of 



91 

Swat, i\ud r.ov/ l:no\v ih;\fc v;o lied. But of tlie truth of fko 
second portion of the c'nargc there is no doubt, and sedition- 
mongers in Hindustan would do Avell to note, that the Afridig, 
who demand the rendition of all Afridi women resident in 
Hindustan, vvith a view to inflicting a cruel death penalty on 
them, would, did they have the power, establish woraen-slave- 
markets in Indian towns, or preferably carry off the women 
wholesale, slaughtering the males after the manner of the 
Moghul Sultan's best traditions. 

But to return to the raid and its consequences. Shabkadar 
as has been mentioned, is onl}'- seventeen miles from Peshawar, 
and news of the incursion soon reached the authorities there, 
and at once General Elles ordered a moveable column out, 
which marched to Shabkadar the same evening. The moveable 
column was under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel J. Woon, 
20th Punjab Infantry, and it was composed as follows : — 

4 guns of No. 61, Field Battery (under Captain S. W. W. 
Blacker, R.A.). 

2 squadrons, 13th Bengal Lancers (under Major P. G. 
Atkinson). 

2 companies, Somersetshire (Prince Albert's) Light In- 
fantry (under Major A. Lumb). 

20th Punjab Infantry. 

Prom Peshawar could be clearly seen the glare in the 
sky produced by the burning village of Shankargarh. It 
was felt that urgency was absolutely necessary and the 
cavalry riding forward arrived at Shabkadar early on Sunday 
morning. The infantry also marched well, despite the fact 
that the Somersets had only just arrived at Peshawar when 
they were ordered to advance to Shabkadar. There was 
no difficulty over the Kabul River for the first two branches, as 
it was bridged, but on arrival at the third, the 13th Bengal 
Lancers set their horses at the ford and s^vam across. The 
infantry when they arrived at the third branch suffered 
considerable delay as they had to be ferried over, a tedious 
proceeding. 

When Major Atkinson and the first squadron of his 
cavalry arrived near Shabkadar, they saw the village of 
Shankargarh in flames. He reconnoitred Shabkadar, and it was 



92 

foaiifl fhat tlie repoifc wliicb bad been receivsd regarding ^be 
retitetneiit of tlie raiders was true only in pait. Alter buining 
tbe village and unsuccessfully attempting to .storm tbe Fort, 
tbey retired to tbe low bills wbicb run from tbe main ranges to 
■witbin a mile and a balf of tbe Fort, wbicb is tbree miles from 
tbe border line. Here tbey remained out of gun sbot range and 
their numbers were fast increasing, contingents being attracted, 
by tbe tales of success, from almost all tbe Mobmand clans. 
Lieutenant A. G. B, Turner reacbed tbe fort at 8 A.M. and then 
acted as a compact squadron until Major Atkinson brought up 
tbe other squadron of the I3th Bengal Lancers, tbe infantry 
arriving somewbat later. 

The preliminary brush with the enemy now took place. 
The cavalry skirting tbe cultivated ground between the 
fort and tbe plateau upon wbicb tbe enemy was in position, 
pusliedtbem backwards and forced tbe Mohmands into the low 
liills 'which skirt the border, with consideiable loss to horses and 
men. The cavalry followed as tbe enemy retired until they 
were stopped by the nature of tlie ground. Unable to advance 
further a retreat was carried out, when tbe tribesmen followed 
them up till they reached open ground, firing into tbera, but 
without inflicting much damage. 'J'he force passed the night 
in the Fort and was not attacked. Reinforcements of 3^ com- 
panies of the 30tb Punjab Infantry and 1 Field Troop, 13th 
Bengal Lancers, were sent from Pesb.awar on Sunday night. 



CHAPTER XIX. 



THE SHABKADAPv FIGHT : A MAGNIFICENT CAVALRY CHARGE. 

HIO next morning the enemy was seen to be still in 
possession of tbe lower ranges of tbe hills, but he did 
not appear in great force, so Colonel Woon, about 6 
in the morning, moved out his troops to the attack. 
Takii:g his course via Shabkadar village, he gained 
the plate au which tbe enemy bad held oo the preceding day. 




93 

Colonel Woon liad at his disposal between 1,100 <and 1,200 
men. On ilic platean our infantry were halted for a space 
to enable the artillery who had been in difficulties over the 
rough and uncultivated ground, to come up ; with the artillery 
being the Bengal Lancers as an escort. Brigadier-General Elles 
had been at Sliabkadar on the Sunday, but he had returned to 
Peshawar, ro arrange the disposition of the wenkcned garrison 
and to telegraph information to those at head-qaarters of the 
state of affairs on the frontier. 

The enemy's line was found to be about two miles in length, 
and there were from 6,000 to 7,000 tribesmen assembled, a 
much larger number than was expected. Colonel Woon began 
his attack with the infantry and he found the enemy full of 
fight. The infantry being ia such small' numbers, only about 
700, the enemy conceived the bold idea of completely envelop- 
ing them and cutting off their retreat to the fort. Tlie large 
numbers of the enemy enabled them to show a strong front, at 
the same time to detach a force to operate on Colonel Woon's 
left flank, and also a further strong detachment to work as 
the cuttiog off party. The flanking party came down under 
cover of the Gandab nullah, while the third party, completely 
concealed by the low hills, so far achieved that object that the 
{>mall force of Somersets and 20th Punjab Infantry were forced 
<o fall back. The enemy were greatly assisted by ravines and 
tie br<»ken nature of the country. 

This has always been the battle ground of the Mohmands, 
and tiieir past histories point to this method of attack. 

To guard against his infantry being enveloped by the 
enemy who were streaming out into the plain on either hand. 
Colonel Woon began to withdraw towards the fort. The 
infattry retired in two sections, the one supporting the 
other. Bot the tribesmen, as usual, interpreted an oiderly re- 
tirement to be a defeat, and pressed on with great deteiniiua- 
tion, nt times being within a hundred yards of the Shabkadar 
force. The position was critical. 

At this point General Ellefl who had hurried back hoift 
Peshawar appeared on the battle field and took command. 
While thf- ittfiititry were thus retiring by alfernnte bodies on 
the fort, tlie aitillery were able to come into action, and tliis freed 
thecavaliy. 'J'he retirement to prevent being outfl^mk.cd wiis 



94 

absolutely necessary. The tribesmen — some of them got up 
within 300 yards of the guns and Captain Blacker had 
a nasty wound in the knee — were triumphant and in their mad 
fanaticism recognised no personal dangers but literally threw 
themselves on to our soldiers. The Foit was still a good way 
oil, and the retirement of our men promised to be very much 
harassed, even if successful. A field troop of cavalry, sent out 
the night before with a detachment of the 30th Punjab 
Infantry, now arrived and took over the escort of the guns. 
Major Atkinson and his two squadrons of Lancers were 
t h eref ore free. 

Wlieu General Elles left Peshawar early on Monday morn- 
iiL;-, lie brought back .with him two companies of the 30th 
i'unjab Infantry. It was at the ferry over the Kabul River 
tliat he heard the sound of heavy firing in the direction of 
Shabkadar,. and leaving his infantry to follow on, he galloped 
forward to the scene of action. When he arrived operations 
had been in progress for more than two hours, and our troops 
were undoubtedly being very hardly pressed by the fanatical 
tribesmen, who 'had swarmed from their fastnesses in the 
loAV-lying hills, and were engaging our infantry in the open. 

Ou at least tw'o previous occasions when we have fought with 
the wild Mohmands, cavalry has won for us the day. Geueral 
Elles must have thought of this when he ordered the 18th 
Bengal Lancers to make their magnificent charge. Everything 
was favourable to the use of mounted soldiers. The enemy 
were on a plateau, and although the ground was rough it yet 
would enable the Lancers to charge with deadly effect. The 
main body, of the tribesmen was fast completing its strategical 
attempt to envelop our little infantry force, and it was cavalry 
preceded by battery fire which alone could save the situation. 

This the General saw clearly, and concentrating the fire of 
his four guns upon theenemy's left, he gave the order to the loth 
Bengal Lancers to charge. From right to left along the whole 
line of the tribesmen was the command. It was a mngnificent 
spectacle. Making their way up one of the ravines, the 13th 
were able to manoeuvre outwards so as to join the eiu-my's 
flank unperceived, and forming in a wwZZa/i they made oix-'of 
the most brilliant charges which even Indian Cavaliy i;us 
reeorded. 



95 

The frroiind was a mass of stones, bonldors nncl nps and 
downs, over tln> folds of the .grouml. ]t ouly shows what 
cuv.-iliy can do when nc^ccssary, nnd th;it, as far as Asiatic 
^\;nI■!»lo is concerned, their sun hns not yet set. Coming round 
npon the iiank of tlic Mohmands tlie two sqiuidrons literally 
swept them from cud to ,end. leavinor killed and wounded 
8lrewu behind to testify to the effect of their superb effort. The 
brilliant charge was commanded by Afajor Atkinson, and 
both he and Lieutenant A. Y. Cheyne li:id their horses shot 
under them. 'I'he effect of the charge on tiie enemy was abso- 
lutely indescribable. Where had been the buoyancy of victory 
and tlie enthusiasm of complete success, now followed almost 
i))Stantaneousl¥.a demoialisation so complete that it culminated 
in blank despair and utter rout. By this time the caA'alry had 
rcheved all pressure on the infantry and gnns, and their 
ghjrious part in the day's work was for the time being at an end. 

Before the enemy could recover from the effects of the 
cavalry charge, -and they certainly did not show much dis- 
position io reform and resume the fight— the infantry fittaek 
w^a^: ordered. The two companies of the oOth Punjab Infantry 
which General Elles had left behind at the Kabul i-iver ferry 
T\o\v cane up, and joining the Somersets an.d the other troops 
tiiey pursued the fast retreating enemy to the foot of th(.' low- 
lying hills where farther chase was impracti^-able an 1 ho 
obtained the much desired refuge. 

The day was still early, it being only 10-30 a. ii., 1. l. ; i.i^ 
fight was over. The General, realizing that his men were 
more or less fatigued after their four or more hours of trying 
work in the field, decided to close the operations for the day. 
With, the small infantry force lie had at his disposal, he would 
hardly have felt justified in pushing forward into the hills, 
and perhaps engaging the enemy where his cavalry would 
not have been able to render the admirable service they had 
done on the plateau of Shabkadar. On the brave sepoys of the 
20th Punjab Infantry fell the brunt' of the Ghazi attack, and 
seven of the twelve killed and nearly half the wounded be- 
onged to this regiment, the Pathans and Sikhs offering the 
most stubborn resistance to the attempts of the enemy to sur- 
round the infantry. 

Thus already on two occasions in these present frontie? 
disturbances has the vital importance of cavalry assert- 



96 

itseli. Afc Chakdara tlie 11th Bengal Lancers rnd the Guides 
Cavalry coropletelj outstripped the relieving infantry and, 
after crushing the courage of tlie foe and taking- full advantage 
of his flight, had succeeded in leaving a hundred dead and 
dying tribesmen on the field. There is nothing the warlike 
tribesman fears so much as a charge of cavalry, and it is 
rarely he gives the opportunity to our brilliant mounted 
soldiers to prove the value of the premier arm of the service. 
When he does he receives a lesson of a terrible chamcter, 
and as has been over and over again exemplified, two or three 
squadrons can with perfect safety and confidence be sent 
charging against thousands of tribesmen. More or less oa 
the actual plateau where the 13th Bengal Lancers made their 
proud charge, the 7ti> Hussars siinihirly achieved renown in 
January of 1864, when a single squadron of the British 
Cavalry Begiment made three successive charges on a body 
of five thousand AJohmands, and by effectively breaking rhe 
tribesmen's line enabled Colonel Macdonnel, of the Rifle 
Brigade and his infantry to charge decisively and victoriously. 

It is a singular commentary on the fear and horror whi^^h 
the tribesman has of cavalry that even a ghazi, desppi^ate 
and determined, to whom life has no object and death no 
fear, who indeed seeks death as the key to paradise and 
immortality, will not face the horse soldier. The bre;asiwoi k 
he will charge right up to, and he leaps forward to a body 
of infantry with yells of delight, but when cavalry soldiers 
appear, fear enters his fanatical spirit and he flie.s anywhere 
for safety, and if caught np he will die without that savage 
exultancy that is characteristic of him under ^ther circum- 
stances. 

The Mohmands, completel3^ demoralized, did not rest even 
when they reached the safe haven of the low-lying hills 
vrhich, with overweening confidence, they had rashly left in 
the early morning to annihilate our infantry. Not even the 
power of the Hadda Mullah, who was present at the fight, 
could restore cohesion to the bodies of flying tribesmen, and 
hurrying away belter -skelter, they shortly disappeared alto- 
gether, and Colonel Woon believed later oq that there were 
none of the enemy to be seen anywhere. 

Estimates as to the loss suffered by the enemy in this 
battle differ a good deal, but probably a thousand killed arid 



97 

■vvounacd is quite within the mark. Tncludecl in tiie dead of 
the enemy were tliirfcy-two of the leadiag men of the Moh- 
mands. Although severe, our losses in dead and wounded were 
not very great, considering the overwhelming superiority in 
numbers of the enemy and the close quarters at which at one 
time the affair was conducted. There. was, however, the usual 
dastardly mutilation of our dead discovered when the bodies 
were brought in. The casualty list was as follows : — 

Killed. — Somersetshire Light Infantry, four privates ; 
20th Punjab Infantry, seven sepoys; 13th Bengal Lancers, 
one sowar, 

TVotmded severely. — Major Lamb, Somersetshire Light 
Infantry (bullet wound in neck) ; Captain Blacker, 51st Field 
Batteiy (bullet wound in the leg) ; Somersetshire Light 
Infantry, eight non-commissioned officers and men; 20th 
Punjab Infantry, thirty-four sepoys ; Bengal Lancers, eight 
sowars. 

Wounded slightly. — Lieutenant Cheyne, 13 th Bengal 
Lancers ; Second Lieutenant E. G. Drumraond, Somerset&hii'e 
Light Infantry ; one pi-ivate, Somersetshire Light Infantry ; 
one sepoy, 20th Pnnjab Infantry ; six sowars, Bengal Lancers ; 
two non-commissioned officers, 61st Field Battery. 

It only remains to be noted that the wounds inflicted on our 
men were made by almost every class of ballet, Lee-Metford, 
Martini-Henry, shrapnel bullets and rugged lumps of lead and 
other metal. It is also quite evident that the bullets used were 
mostly of very decided "stopping" power. A man hit was 
stopped. An exception was Lieutenant E. G. Drnmraond of the 
Somersets, who was hit by a Lee-Metford, but was able to go on. 
It is not an unfair presumption, therefore, that men on the 
enemy's side hit hy our Lee-Metford bullets (which at this 
time were not of the nev/ Dum-Dum pattern) were not imme- 
diately placed hors de combat. The 61st Field Battery did 
splendid service. Since the Afghan War this was the first 
time a field battery has been in a frontier action, whilst it 
was also the first time that the new artillery twelve-pounder 
has ever been fired in earnest. In the fight on the &th instant, 
our soldiers say they saw regular regiments with colours, 
dressed uniformly and using bugles. An officer says : I my- 
self saw iiiniiy men in a kind of khakL many also nearly naked. 



98 

These latter were swordsmen, and wei-e omployod chiefly at a 
distance. The riflemen were employed closer, jind in the flank 
attack on our left the ground favoured tin's. Their fire was 
generally high or our casualties would have heen greater. 
They resorted to the old dodge of planting a hanner on a ridge 
and then went somewhere else and fired from cover, of which 
there was plenty available on our left. It.was more open in 
front of the artillery, who were much disgusted when the 
dodge referred to was discovered. In the cavalry charge a 
woman, unarmed, bearing a standard and encouraging the 
men, was also seen. 



CHAPTER XX. 



WATCHING THE FRONTIER. 




MTNOUS rumours now became general of tribal con- 
vulsions in tlie Khyber District, the Afi-idi country, 
the Kohat Bordej^ and the Kurram Valley. Gov- 
ernment wisely decided that all contingencies must 
be guarded against, and accordingly in the middle of: 
August orders were given for the formation of two reserve 
brigades, to be concentrated at Rawalpindi as the most con- 
venient place from which to operate in any direction. In the 
Government Gazette these brigades were put down under the 
head of " Disturbances " and were styled the 2nd and 3rd 
Reserve Brigades and were composed as follows : — 

Second Reserve Brigade. 

2nd Battalion, The Oxfordshire Light Infantry. 

Sod Battalion, The Royal Irish Regiment. 

Ist Battalion, 3rd Gurkha (Rifle) Regiment. 

]2th (The Khelat-i-Ghilzai) Regiment of Bengal Infantry^ 

No. 3 Mountain Battery, Royal Artillery. 

18th Regiment of Bengal Lancers. 



99 

No. 4 Company, Bombay Sappci-s and Rliners. 

No. 23 Britisli Field IToppifnl. 

No. 62 Native Field Iloppifal. 

Sections A and B of No. 81 Native Field Hospital. 

Third Rkservk Brig.^de. 

]st Battalion, The Nortlianiptor.sliire Regiment. 

let Battalion, Tlie Dorsetsliire Begiment. 

9th Gurkha (Rifle) Regiment of Bengal Infantry. 

1st Battalion, 2nd (Prince of Wales' Own) Gnrkha (Rifle) Regiment. 

Rrd Field Battery, Royal Artillery. 

3rd Regiment of Rprigal Cavalry. 

No. 4 Company, " Queen's Own " Jladras Sappers and Minera 

No. 24 British Field ITospital. 

No. 03 Native Field Hospital. 

Sections C and D of No. 31 Native Field Hospital, 

Commands and Staff. 

The following nppoiiitments Tieic rnnde to the staff of the 
brip^ades : — 

Second Rf.sERvi: Brigade. 

Convnnnciing ... Brigadier-General R. Westraacott, 

C.33., n.s.o. 
Orderly Officer Liouteuant R. C. Weliesley, Royal 

Horse Artillery. 
Deputy Assistant Adjutant-General Captain W. P. Blood, Royal Irish 

Fusiliers. 
Depufy Asnstant Quartermaster-Gen- 

'">'"l Captain F. J. M. Edwards, 3rd Bom. 

bay Light Cavalry. 
Field Intelligence Officer ... ... Captain F. A. Hoghton, 1st Bombay 

Infantry (Grenadiers). 
Principal Medical Officer Brigade-Surgeon-Lieotenant-Coloncl 

R. G. Thamsett, Army Medical 

Staff. 
Teferinnry Officer Veterinary-Lieutenant F. U. Carr, 

Army Veterinary Depai-tment. 

Br ir.uh Ordnance Offixer Major T. E. Rowan, Royal Artillery. 

Brio'ide Commissariat Officer ... Captain E. Y. Watson, Deputy As- 

sistant Commissarv-General. 



100 



Assistant to Brigade Commissariat 
OJIicer {Regimental Ojjicer) 

Brigade Transport Ojjicer 



Lieutenant N. G. Fraser, 4t]i Bombay 

Cavalry. 
Captain W. H. Armstronjx, Jst Bat- 

tfilion, East Yorkshire Ref^iment. 



Third Reserve Brigadi 



Commnnding ... ... 

Orderly Officer 

Deputij Assistaiit Adjntant-General 

Deputy Assistant Quartermaster- 
General 

Field Intelligence Oficer 

Principal Medical Officer ,., 

Veferinarij Officer ... ,.« 

Brigade Ordnanre Officer ... ... 

Jirigade Commissariat Officer 

Assista7it io Brigade Cojmni.isarict 
Officer (Regimental Officer) 

Brigade Tram-port Officer ,., 



Brigfulier-General A, G. Yeatuiaa 
Biggs, c.B. 

Captain E. St. A. Wake, 10th Bengal 
Lancers. 

IMajor E. F. H. MeSAviuev, d.s.o., IsL 
Lancers, Hyderabad Contingent, 

Captain C. P. Scmiamore, D.s.o., 

Royal Scots I'usiliers. 
lilajor R. C. A. B. Bevvicke- Copley, 

King's Royal Rifle Corps. 

Brigvide-Surgeou-Lieutenant-Cidonel 
W. .H. Murpliy, D.s.o., Indian Me- 
dical Service. 

Veterinary-Lientenant F. W.Wilson, 
Army Veterinary Dejcutment. 

Captain M. W. S. Tasley, Roval 
Artillery. 

Captain C. F. T. ilurray, Assistant 
Cunin)issarv -General. 



Capt.iin P. n. Rogers, 2nd Battnlion, 
Yorkshire Light Ini^uit!}'. 

Captain H. W. C. Colqulioun, 2lth 
Madras ]Ilfantr3^ 

Plaving witlidi ;iv.'n the troops to tlie neiglibouiliood of the 
Fort, Geueral EUes rcturued to Pe.sliawar, and immediately 
ordered up to Shabkadar the remainder of the Somersetshire 
Light Infantry, and 250 of the 37th Dogras, so as to be ready 
to assume the offensive if the Mohmands re-appeared. As it 
was impossible to say how far the excitement extended along 
the border, General Elles called up three companies of the 
8th Bengal Infantry from Nowshera, and at the same time 
asked for one battery of artillery, a regiment of native cavalry 
and'one of native infantry, it being important to have a strong 
gariison at Peshawar. The Gordon Highlanders, under orders 



101 

from Array Headquarters had been despatched from Rawal- 
pindi by train at midnight on Sunday, and reached Pesha^Yar 
on Monday afternoon, the 2nd Queen's from Jullundur replac- 
ing them at Rawalpindi as part of the Reserve Brigade of the 
Malakand Division. 

The troops now watching the Mohmand Frontier were 
the 5Ist Field Battery (four guns), two squadrons, 13th Ben- 
gal Lancers, the Somersetshire Light Infantry (740 strong), 
the 20th Punjab Infantry (600 strong), the 30th Punjab In- 
fantr7 (300), the 37th Dogras (250), or a handy force of about 
2,200 men. 

From the 9t.h, until it was determined to send an army 
into the Mohmand country, the force was a corps of observa- 
tion, and the duty was exceptionally severe, as with an enemy 
audacious enough to attack the very fort of Shabkadar — 
to attempt to axe open the door and to burn the environs — 
there was no saying what they might not attempt. The 
cavalry patrolled day and night, and one squadron of the 13th 
Bengal Lancers under Major J, H. Balfour, reconnoitred all three 
main routes into the Mohmand country which are due north- 
south of the Alikandi route through Findiali's villages (north 
Mohmand), the Gnndab nullah, the direct route, the southern 
boundary of which was the scene of Colonel Woon's fight and 
which leads to the centre of the country, and lately the Sbinoil 
route which leads into the southern portion of the valley by 
Afghanistan via Lalpura. It was not possible in any case to 
reconnoitre beyond a five mile radius from camp, because the 
enemy's pickets invariably fired on any attempt being made. 
All the main kotals were held in strength, at times to as many 
as a hundred to two hundred rifles. 

On the I2t,h, the daily cavalry j>atrol reported heav^. 
firiug at 7 a.m. at the mouth of the Karappa defile in Giindslfe. 
nullah. Major Balfour moved out and supported the pafcrpl 
and found that a party of tribesmen, about 300 strong, presulii- 
ably Halamzais, had come down into the Tarakzai hills, aifd 
had planted three standards on the side of the left boundary of 
the defile which is clearly visible from Shabkadar. Thi^J 
sainted the act ^vith a f usilade of not less than fifiy rounds. UTO. 
arrival of the cavalry the tribesmen upfooted their standards 
and disappeared into the defile, and the cavalry had orders not 
to follow them further. 



102 

The reinforcement ofthe Pesliawar garrison was carried 
onfcwith the utmost despatch and eventnally General Elles had 
thefollo wing troops in Peshawar itself, having sent the remain- 
der of the 13th Bengal Lancers to Shabkadar, angmenting the 
strength of the force there to about 2,600 men ;— 

One Section, 51st Field Battery. 

No. 57 Field Battery. 

No. 5 Company, Bengal Sappers. 

9th Bengal Lancers. 

The Devonsliire Regiment. 

The Gordon Highlanders. 

The 2nd Battalion of the Ist GnrkhaS, 

Five Companies, 80th Piinjah Iirfantry. 

Six Companies, 37th Dogras. 

Three Companies, 8th Bengal Infantry. 

After the action on the 9th August notliing more was seen of 
the Mohmands at Shabkadar for many days. On the morning 
of the 13th, the 13th Bengal Lancers" walked over" the scene 
of the recent fight and eaw no one. On the 14th the whole 
force moved out and played the game of " Do tread on the 
tail of my coat," bat without the least result. The gorge of 
the Gandab Valley route was thoroughly reconnoitred, and an 
officer's patrol pushed up the valley as far as they could safely 
go. The valley, on going forward, closes in, and about 2| miles 
up, the patrol came upon small parties of scouts on the tops of 
adjoining hills, but no gathering of any number could be detect- 
ed. These scouts made no attempt to fire on the patrol, which 
could, however, not advance any further. It was tolerably 
certain, then, that the Mohmand raiders were not in a hurry io 
come out of the hills and try conclusions with the force. 

The cavalry reconnoitred the Alikandi route into tlie 
Mohmand country on the 19th, and they found that the passes 
were occupied by the euemy. This showed the intention of 
the Mohmands not to allow any force to approach their moun- 
tain homes unopposed, and it was felt that any entry into <he 
hills would require to be in sufficient strength to overcome all 
opposition. 

It is well known that between frontier tribesmen Mud 
gikhs exists a deadly feud dating back to the times when the 



103 

Sikhs, fis rulers of the Punjab, were engaged in frontier puni- 
tive missions. Religious differences have also accentuated this 
hatred and the most grim records of our frontier troubles will 
be found where Sikh and Mussalman tribesman have been the 
foemen. Soon after the Shabkadar fight an incident occurred 
which embittered more than ever this race and religions spirit 
of vendetta in the sons of the Khalsa. It was found, after the 
Mohmand raid and the battle of Shabkadar, that the tribes- 
men had looted the sacred temple or Dtirbar Sahib at Shabkadar, 
and that a number of copies of the holy scriptures or Granih 
Sahib had been burnt. No act could be more calculated to 
incense the frontier Sikh soldiers, and when to this is added 
the other atrocities perpetrated on the Sikhs, it will be seen 
that they had indeed sufficient cause to nourish anew old 
animosities and to cherish the sweet prospect of revenge. 



THE LOSS Of THE KHYBER PASS. 

CHAPTER XXI. 




THE AFRIDIS ON THE WARPj^TH. 

[I N OTHER shake of the kaleidoscope is now to be 
lemarked, anJ v/e see the further developments in 
what by tliis time had generally come to be con- 
^-'^^ sidered a pie-arranged and carefully mapped out 

plan of revolt As though Tochi, followed by 
Malakand and Chakdara, with Shabkadar and the Mohmand 
rising superveiiiiig, was not a sufficiently acute form of frontier 
npheaval, strange reports now began to receive corroboration 
which showed clearly and unmistakeably that practically the 
entire north-west frontier of India was ablaze with rebellion 
and that from the Malakand to the Kurram the "fiery cross" 
had roused all to arms. The green flag of Islam had been 
unfurled and to it flocked the fanatical frontiersmen. 

The outlook was black, and now was to be tested the value 
and strength of our occupation of the Kurram Valley, that 



104 

dominating forward frontier position of which seventeen years 
ago \Yc possessed ourselves, and of the amount of faith to be 
placed on tlie Afridis with whom we had a covenant to protect 
and keep open the Khyber Pass. 

The first signs of the further spreadir.g of the revolt was the 
disquieng news from Peshawar, that a simultaneous rising 
had boa arranged between the Orakzais and the Afridis. The 
detnils of this alleged concert of two of the most powerful 
and warlike of onr frontier neighbours revealed at last that 
cohesion and unison which is always to bo feared, and from 
•which we have hitherto been saved. Rumotirs— and the 
arrant jade has been singularly accurate throughout the pre- 
sent ditfUirbances — had it that the Afiidis were to possess 
themselves of the Khyber Pass, whilst simultaneously the 
Orakzais would rise and massacre the 8ikhs and other troops 
garrisoning the outposts in the Samaiia and throughout the 
Kurram Yalley. Fortunately, however, this handobast if ever 
made — and of this there can be little doubt — fell through, and 
once again we saw an instance of that extrn ordinary Avant of 
combination w^hich has been so marked in the most powerful 
fronti er upheaval the JSritish in India have ever been concerned 
with, cand which lias lessened by a good deal the formidable 
character of the rebellion which the Sirkar has to suppress. 
Rise eventually both participators to this anti-British agree- 
ment did, but t;he Orakzais delayed the actual commencement 
of hostilities in the Kurram country until their brother 
conspirators in the Khyber, fulfilling their part of the bond, 
had risen, performed what they had set out to do, and dis- 
persed. 

Turning first to the Afridi demonstration in the Khyber 
Pass, some reference is necessary to the warlike and dominat- 
ing frontiersmen who created our troubles in that historic 
neighbourhood. The Afridis occupy the .country between 
the Khyber-Kabul route — the upper slopes of the Safed Koh 
on the west-^and the Kohat district, with its recent extension 
westwards, the Kurram valley. That block makes roughly a 
square 65 miles each way, and contains over 4,000 square miles. 
Here dwell in savage independence the Afridis, six of whose 
eight clans are generally spoken of as the Khyber tribes, vi:., the 
Kuki, Malikdin, Kambar, Kamar and Zakka Khel and the Sipah. 
The Ak^ Khel are foiind further to the south, beyond the right 



105 

bank of tlie Bara River ; wliilo the Adaiu Kliel hold the hills be- 
tween the Peshawar and Kohat Districts and are regarded as a 
separate community, their interests not being identical with 
those of the clans to the north-west. In the summer months 
the majority of the Afridis move to Tirah, a high plateau 
Avhere also go the Orakzais. The Rajgal and Maidan valleys 
are studded with their mat hnts during the hot weather, 
and their flocks and herds find good pasturage. The Kuki 
Khel always resort to Rajgal, while Maidan is left for the 
other clans. In the winter the whole population swarms down 
into the Bara and Bazar Valleys, and also into the low hills 
bordering the Jamrud plain. Tirah has ne ver becnjdsitpd by 
oar troops-, and it is regarded as the At'ridi stronghold. In 
the Afghan war of 1878-80 two expeditions were sent into the 
Bazar Valley, but it was not considered- expedient to enter the 
Ilajgal and Maidan Valleys, as this would have involved the em- 
ployment of at least 10,000 men. The Afridis are collectively the 
finest and best armed race of dare-devil Afghans on our border, 
and are believed to have a united fighting strength of not less 
than from 25,000 to 28,000 men. Neither Moghal Emperor, Sikh 
Khalsa, Amir of Afghanistan, nor Viceroy of India has ever made 
any enduring impression upon them. Eich clan is supreme 
within its own narrow limits, sometimes at peace and some- 
times at war with a neighbouring clan, but all readily uniting 
against an external foe. Inside the clan almost every family 
has its inherited blood-feud. Greed and overweening pride 
are the strongest characteristics of the Afridis. 

The Afridis are men of fine physique and g^and fig.hting^ 
_ c[ualities , but their gen eral c haracter is o f tEe worst. Ruthleis7\<» ,0' 
coward 1)^ robbery, col3-bIood^d , treac herous mui^der, a re to an ^ 
"Airld i ti rp s^iTTot life . ^Bto ugHt up from his earliest childhood 
"ami d "scenes of appaliingjbreacheryj^l^l- ipe^'ci less rev'eng er-^e «— 
thing can change bim; as~he has iTvea7ni''''^sl>f Hnclc 33 , e v^stel 
savage, so he dies^ And it would seem that notwithytaudrng 
their long"Th"terco urge wi tTrthe~Bi^itTsh7 "and "th at tery lar'ge 
numbers are, or have" been, in our service, and niustlhave lears-* 
edriTrsuffie~pbor way what faith Ifnd mercy and justice are; yet 
the Afridrchnracter is iiu better th{m~i t wa"a"imhe days uf -h is 
fattrers. 1^'rom such material as this, however, good soIdTers 
havelbeen made of the men enlisted in certain native regiments, 
and the trained Afridi fights with an elati which is highly ap- 
preciated by those who lead him. The blood feuds and quarrels 



106 

between the various clans lead to mucli intemal fighting, 
bnt it is quite certain that any invasion of their country would 
8ee t lie in all united. Unlike most of the other trans-border 
Afglians, they readily take foreign service. In the height of 
the Mutiny, said Lord Lawrence, one of the sections of the 
Afridis furnished us with 1,600 picked men, whom we formed into 
two battalions : they went down to Onde, and served for more 
than a year to our satisfaction. Some 4,000 of their young men 
are now soldiers in our Native army and in those of our Indian 
feudatories. As they hold both the Khyber route aud the direct 
road between Peshawar and Kohat, our intercourse with them 
since the first Afghan war h«asbeen continuous. Although our 
troops have on several occasions — notably in 1855, 1877, 1878, 
and 1879 — penetrated far into their barren hills — thoroughly 
" lifted their purdah^'' as the frontier phrase has it — hostilities 
have never been prolonged beyond a few days. The loss of 
pass allowances and the privations consequent on a blockade 
are, as a rule, sufficient to at once coerce malcontent sections 
into submission to the will of the tribal representatives, who 
collectively prefer peace and payments to war and want. 
Physically a magnificent man the Afridi makes a splendid 
soldier, and in the Chitral campaign the cavalry charge of an 
Afridi company of the Guides (after Major Battje had been 
shot down) was one of the finest instances of dash, discipline 
and bravery recorded. On the offensive he is an enemy to 
treat with the greatest respect : on the defensive he lias not that 
dareness and stubborn courage which is characteristic of the 
Sikh and Gurkha, his comrades in many a bloody siroggle. 

Towards the beginning of August the first rumours of a 
rising of the Afridis in the Khyber Pass began to be spread 
about, but as day after day passed and they did not come to a 
head, it was considered in many well informed quarters that it 
was purely a scare. Nevertheless the military autkorities 
relaxed no efforts and troops were rapidly moved to the front 
from all "^arts of India. It was hoped that this ra])id mobi- 
lisation would deter the Afridis and Orakzais from making any 
attack, although it was well understood that it only lequired 
some wild act of fanaticism to send them all ablaze. 

The disaffection among the Afridis and Orakzais is the 
■work of Aka Khel Mullah, yet another of those pestiferous 
fanati^js whose presence on our frontier is always a menance to 



107 

peace and order. First of all he tried to rouse the Oinkznis, 
gping there doubtless because the business of kindling tlie 
blaze would be easier iu that mountainous country Avlieie the 
British guards are few on the scattered outposts. Syad Akbai-, 
another Mullah, loomed largely in frontier affairs at this time. 
He is supposed to have brought to the tribesmen — the Orakzais 
particularly — promises of help from Afgharjistan. 

News capie slowly from the Khyber and the country 
beyond, and on August 22nd the Pioneer, in a singularly 
optimistic article, hinted that our military operations had over- 
awed the malcontents, that further tribal i-isings on a large 
scale were now unlikely, and that not much importance need 
bo attached to any rumours from the Kurram Valley. Never 
was prophecy more wide of the mark. Later on came definite 
information that on the 21st August the Afridis without a 
doubt were up, and that the clans of Aka Khel, Malikdin Khel 
and Zakka Kbel, in particular, had slai ted from Tiiah to march 
up the Khyber and take possession of the forts up to liora and 
Jamrud. On that day General Elles despatched a flying 
column of all three arms to Bara to wait for the hostile demon- 
stration, whilst the Jamrud column was kept more on the alert 
than ever. The 6th Bengal Lancers were ordered to Peshawar 
which gave General Elies at his disposal no less than eighteen 
squadrons of cavalry besides infantry, two Batteries Boyal 
Horse Artillery, two Field and one Mountain Batteries — truly a 
formidable force, consisting in all of between 11,000 and 12,000 
men. 

On the 23rd the Afridis came rushing up the Khyber Pass 
in great force, their line extending a mile and a half. 

In the plains of India no one ever dreamed that the Khyber 
Pass could fall into the hands of the tribesmen with such an aru)y 
close at hand, but by the 23rd the whole Pass from Ali ]\rasjid 
to Landi Khana was in the possession of the Afridis. Thus 
almost before we knew the Pass had been menaced, and whilst 
we were congratulating ourselves on the large proporlions of 
the garrison at Peshawar, which would effectually nip in the 
bud any fresh development of the spirit of revolt in that 
direction, we found that the Pass in its entirety was held by 
the Afridis. 

General Elles sent " K " Battery with the Dragoon Guards 
and four companies of British Infantry to move from the mouth 



103 

of tlie Kliyoer witli tlie view to rendering assistance to tlie 
beleaguered garrison at Fort Maude if this should prove practic- 
able. Apparently this was not at all prauh'cable, for the force 
fearing the possibility of flank attacks only advanced to within 
two or three miles of the fort, when it opened fire v.ithont doing 
any damage. It was seen that Fort Maude was in flames, and 
then our troops retired. 

Some slight need of satisfaction was given io us by the 
knowledge that the little garrison of Khyber pL.ifles at Fort 
Maude did not surrender to the tribesmen, but; managed, when 
the guns of '* K " Battery scared the tribesmen, to effect an 
orderly retreat to Jamrud where they were received with much 
enthusiasm. With the exception of three wounded men and one 
other who probably went over to the Afridis, the garrison, 
with the rifles, turned up intact at Jamrud. On the same day 
came the news that Ali Musjid had been burnt down and that 
Landi Kotal was being hotly besieged, and later that the 
serai was in flames. Later we heard that Landi Kotal 
bad fallen and that the Afridis had made a clean sweep of the 
Khyber. For several nights an attack on Jamrud itself was 
expected and every night the Reserve Brigade at Peshawar 
bivouacked along the north side of the station ready to move 
on to Peshawar if necessary. The fall of such impregnable 
fortresses as Ali Musjid and Landi Kotal, and the securing of 
the Pass was universally held to be the worst blow our prestige 
could suffer on the north-west frontier. 



CHAPTER XXII. 

THE KHYBER PASS AKD ITS DEFE^^DER^r. 

DIGRbjSSION here, in order to refer to the historic 
Khyber Pass and the levies who guarded it, is 
necessary. 

The Pass itself is a v/eird, uncanny place. It is 

a deep slit in the mountains thirty-three miles long 

and cut by torrents that have rushed towards the Indus. Its 

widest part is only 450 feet wide, and it narrows down to less 

than 10 feet in places, while the mountain of slate rocks rises 




109 

on either side absolutely perpendicniar. The road or Led ib 
fairly good, tkongh in places rough with shingle. In summer 
fime it is perhaps the most frightful death hole in the east. 
The heat is such as even the plains of India uever approxi- 
mate to and European and even native soldiers would die like 
flies in the deadly valley. Ali Musjid is 9J miles from the 
entrance on the Indian side. It is a very rough, poor old fort, 
but absolutely impregnable without artillery aud it governs 
the Pass completely. The road by it is on-ly 40 feet wide, 
and happens to be very slippery on account of projecting 
rocks. The mountain rises like a wall on each side, and the 
fort looks straight down from an elevation of 2,433 feet whilst 
Jamrnd at the entrance is 1,670 feet high. To add to the 
picturesqueness of the scene sentries in pairs, belonging to 
the Khyber Rifles, are arranged every two or three hundred 
yards on either side of the mountains for protection against 
the fierce long-bearded savages of the hills in quest of 
plunder. Being once well in the Pass, one is struck with the 
fine workmanship displayed in the narrow winding road, which 
is in perfect condition. On the left the huge mountains rise 
almost perpendicularly for thousands of feet, while on the 
right a depth of a seemingly similar distance yawns beneath, 
making the corkscrew road a veritable ledge on the side of the \ 
huge mountain. The Pass is open for riders only onwards I 
from Ali Musjid to Landi Kotal, its highest point, 3,373 ) 
feet, over which the ascent is most difficult. Here guns could 
be drawn only by men, and even laden animals sometimes find 
the projecting road tooslipper}' for foothold. In rugged wild- 
ness the Khyber surpasses the Via Mala and Glencoe, but the 
sense of gloom is almost wanting under the bnrning sun. 

The Khyber Pass proper twists for thirtj'-three' miles north- 
west from the Peshawar plain at Jamrud to the Afghan plain 
of Jelalabad at Dhaka. By this, the usual route from Peshawar 
city to Kabul, the distance is 183 miles, in nine or ten n;arches. 
In the first Afghan War Colonel VYade, in the heat of July 
1839, marched 11,000 Brifish soldiers and Sikhs up the Khyber, 
under the match-locks of the Afridis, and captured Ali 
Musjid with a loss of 22 killed and 158 wounded. On that 
occasion the Afridis butchered 4,000 of the Yusufzai auxiliaries, 
wh.o had been left to hold an outpost at the northern end, and 
then shut up Colonel Moseley in Ali Musjid. Being destitute of 
piovisions he had to cat his way back to Jamrud. When 



no 

Pollock's army of retribation advanced to Jelalabad and Kabnl in 
1842, Sir Heury Lawrence played bis guns from the beigli^s of 
the Pass to the admiration of all beholders. On the retuiji of 
the triumphant army, General M'Caskill's rear gaard was cat 
off, and two guns detained for a day. In Lord Lytton's cam- 
paign, two days after his declaration of war, " Sam " Brown's 
force captured Ali Musjid in a brilliant fashion, although cholera 
afterwards laid low many a soldier of the garrison. By the 
treaty of Gandaraak in 1879 the British Government retained 
in their hands the Khyber Pass with the control of the inde- 
pendent tribes inhabiting it. Subsequently when Abdur Rah- 
man Khan became Amir, on the forcible abdication of Yakub 
Khan, it was arranged with the former, without, however, any 
formal treaty being concluded, that the Khyber should remain 
in British possession (1880). The entire Pass as far as Dakka, 
opposite Lalpura, was now placed under the Punjab Govern- 
ment. Representatives of the various tribes interested in the 
Khyber Pass were invited to come to Peshawar for a conference 
with the authorities about the arrangements to be made 
for the preservation of order in the Pass, and all these repre- 
sentatives attended in 1881. As a result of these deliberations, 
the Afridis undertook to make themselves responeible for the 
Pass, while the Ali Sher Khel clan of Shinwarris answered for 
the portion of the Pass lying between Landi Khana and Lala 
Beg, the extreme limit of Afridi rights in the Pass. The tribes- 
men were guaranteed their independence ; and in return for 
their services were granted an annual subsidy of Rs. 87,000, 
together with another Rs. 87,000 for the maintenance of a corps 
of Jezailchis. The formal agreement anent the Khyber Pass 
was entered into in February 1881 ; and the parties to it wrere 
the Zakha Khel, Milikdin Khel, Kambar Khel, Kamrai Khel, 
Sipah Khel and Kuki Khel Afridis, as well as the Shinwarris 
of Landi Kotal. Colonel Hastings was the first Political 
Officer who was entrusted with the supervision of the execu- 
tion of these arrangements ; and after him the difficult task fell 
on Colonel War burton, to whom belongs the credit of having 
RQCCGSKf nlly carried out by means of these wild, untamed agents, 
tlio measQi'ps initiated by his predecessor. The IDiyber Pass 
became a safe thoroughfare, and the primitiYe JezaUcHi's 
developed into the Khyber Rifles. 



Ill 



CHAPTKK XXTIT. 



DEFENDING THE KHYBER: BROTH KR AGAINST BROTHER. 

T wa'^ many days after the actual fall of the foi ts and the 
abandonment of the Khyber Pass before full details were 
made public. When the news of the attack on Shab- 
kadar reached him, Captain Barton prepared the posts 
in the Khyber for defence, electing to stay at Landi 
Kotal as the most important post. He knew the fight was 
going to be a stubborn one and he made his arrangements to 
hold the forts against all opposition. Certainly Captain Barton 
never thought a policy of scuttle would have been pursued. 
He sent up 50,000 rounds of ammunition, got in 15 days' 
provisions, and had 15 days' water-supply, while he made 
arrangements with ghurras and mussucks for the other posts. 
At Landi Kotal he increased the garrison by the Mullagori 
company, making it up to a strength of 350 rifles. The fort, 
however, was a very big one, with over 1,000 yards of wall to 
man, requiring as its proper garrison about 1,500 men. 

Ou the 17th August Captain F. J. H. Barton (Guides), 
Political Ofiacer in the Khyber, got the first reliable news that 
the Afridis had risen and intended attacking the Khyber posts. 
He then wrote to the Commissioner of Peshawar, Sir Richard 
Udne}'-, asking for a reinforcement of four companies and two 
guns, which would have been ample to repel any tribal attack. 
Instead of reinforcements. Captain Barton was peremptorily 
ordered to Jamrud on the morning of the 18th iustant and did 
not return, at that time it was known that the Afridis would 
not attack the Pass for at least three days. On the 23rd the 
attack on Ali Musjid began. No one, least of all Captain 
Barton, could be expected to conjecture that the Government 
would leave the Khyber Rifles entirely to their fate ; and that 
he expected to return is shown by the fact that he left all his 
property behind him at Landi Kotal, and which was lost. 

Various stories went about the papers regarding the manner 
m which Landi Kotal was defended by the five native oflScers 
and 370 men of the Khyber Rifles. On one hand it was stated 
emphatically that no resistance worthy the word was offered^ and 



112 

that, whether by design or through treachery, the gates were 
opened before much fighting was done and the tribal mob 
poured in. Some of the garrison, notably the Mnllagori and 
Shilarani sepoys were said to have escaped over the wall with 
theirrifles, while others, including, it is said, the Zakha and Malik- 
din Khels, fraternised with their clansmen and joined in the fun 
of looting the post. Naturally it was not to be expected that 
the garrison would have done anything else, as the foemen were 
their own brothers, but still the news was unpleasant. It was 
therefore a delightful surprise when, a few days after these 
disappointing stories had been circulated and generally accept- 
ed, they received an emphatic contradiction from Captain 
Barton, the Commandant of the Khyber Rifles. I append part 
of the statement he wrota to the papers. It had been said that 
the garrison only held out for two hours or less. Captain 
Barton replied : " As a matter of fact, they resisted steady attack 
for over twenty-four hours. The enemy lost over one hundred 
killed and the garrison had one native officer killed and one 
severely wounded. The latter, who was shot through the 
middle of the shoulder-blade in the early morning of the 25th, 
continued fighting and encouraging his men until the fort was 
taken about midday. The Subadar, who was killed just before 
the enemy effected an entrance and who conducted the defence, 
had two sons in the attacking force, and one son with him in 
the Khyber Rifles. The losses amongst the defenders cannot 
be ascertained as yet, but they were not less than ten killed. 
The Subadar commanding the Mullagori company, when the 
enemy through treachery effected an entrance into the fort, 
collected his company and fought his way through, losing 
several men in doing so. He then took his company through the 
Shilman country and is on his way back to Jamrnd without the 
loss of a rifle." 

The loss which the Khjber Rifles suffered throughout the 
raid* was stated to have been ten only in killed and wounded. 

On September 3rd the Mullagori Subadar (to whom Captain 
Barton makes reference), and 40 men of No. 6 Company, Khyber 
Rifles, who were all Mnllagoris, and who fought their way out 
of the serai at Landi Kotal, returned to Jarai-ud witji their rifles 
amid a scene of great enthusiasm, the garrison turning out to 
a mail and cheering them heartily. They had lost four m'en 
killed and three severely wounded. These men had applied 



113 ^ 

for leave after fighting their way back to their own country, in\ 
order that they might bury their dead and rc-u-^sato their' 
friends. ' . . " 

The following is the terse and reproachful stoi y of the 
siege and fall of Landi Kotal fromtlie lips of one "f the defend- 
ers : — ''When the lashkar came our Subadar had conversa- 
tion with them and asked them to j)ostpone the aftack until 
he was reinforced. The Afridis then drew away and attacked. 
We fonght stubbornly. Airidi and Khyberi alik; expected 
reinforcements and relief. For two nights and two days we 
fought, Afridi brother against Afridi brother, bur, no succour 
came from the Sirkar, and the Subadar, seeing that we" could 
not hoKi out much longer, and that times were against us, told 
us to di??perse in the night — and we came in here !" !'his is the 
true Mu'^salman way of looking at such a contretemps. Times 
were against them. It was Kismet. 

In the middle of September there was another scene of 
enthusiasm at Lan^'^otal when, amidst great cheering and 
■with their own band playing tliem in, Subadar Jawa^-. Khan and 
95 non-commissioned officei's and men, Shinwaris of Xos. 1 
and 2 companies, Khyber Rifles, marched in from Landi 
Kotal, all bringing in their rifles. The Subadar, who liad been 
severely wounded at the defence of Landi Kotal, still had his 
arm and shoulder bound up, but had pluckily m^trched in the 
whole way with his men. He behaved with the greatest 
gallantry during the defence of the fort, cheering on his men 
for several hours after he had been wounded, up to the time 
that the fort was taken by the Qhazis. He and his tribe, the 
Sliinwaris of Loargi, had been threatened that, for r<^tiirning 
to Jararud with their rifles, their villages would he hu>nt and 
their crops destroyed. Their return had been delayed pai tly by 
those threats, but chiefly because they did not like to come 
in without biinging their wounded Subadar with them. As 
thoy were drawn up on the square in front of their barracks, 
they looked an exceedingly fine-looking body of men ^^oldie^B 
to a man. 

These incidents made the general public believe th it the 
Khyber Rifles were more to be pitied than blani..d. and the 
political authorities at Peshawar were felt to h - ■ommitted 
an irretrievable blunder in abandoning the levi; • r,heir fate. 
All told there were only 452 men defending tl <. which 



114 

js twenty miles long. At the time the Pass was attacked (and 
it was known for days before hand that an attack was immi- 
nent), there were 9,500 British and native troops at Peshawar, 
Fort Bara and Jamrud, and not a man was moved to help the 
Khyber Rifles, who were waiting for assistance from the Sirhar 
whos^ salt they had eaten and in whose good faith they had 
implicit trust. 

It is stated on good authority that when the first batch 
of the loyal levies returned to Jamrud with their rifles and 
found an army watching their unnecessary immolation, 
they openly jeered at our troops : and small wonder if this 
was so. In defence of the masterly inactivity which left the 
Khyber Rifles to fight or scuttle, it was urged that there was 
not a force sufficiently well equipped and provisioned to move 
out from Peshawar. All the military authorities could do in 
the time was to hurry troops to Peshawar and Kohat and 
General Elles could not move a column into the Khyber hills 
because he had the Mohmand border at Shabkadar to Avatch 
and guard. But even these apologists felt obliged to c(mfess 
that the loss of the Khyber was not only an incalculable blow 
to our prestige but also the most serious of all incitements 
to a general conflagration along the whole of t-ie north-west 
border. As the Pioneer remarked, if ever there was a case 
for urgent action it was now. 

But there were other disasters in store. 




CRSSV3 FEGhTiNG ON THE SAS^jlArm. 

CHAPTER XXIV. 

THE ORAKZAIS JOIN THE EEVOLT. 



BILE the Afridis were making hay in theJfChyber 
Pass their Orakzai brethren had not yec moved 
in the Kurram Valley and Samana country. In 
this respect at least they were true to their 
traditions of faithlessness and lack of unified 
ugst themselves. There was no doubt that a 
impending and troops were being pushed forward 










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115 

wiMi all speed to Kohat to guard against it. Each day that 
tlie Orakzais delayed their offensive demonstrations rendered 
less difficult the task before us, and when at last the tribes- 
men burst with full force on the Samana outposts, the damage 
they did was small in comparisou to what would have resulted 
had we been completely taken unawares. The Samana country 
branches off to the north from Hangu, which is situated half- 
way between Kohat and the fort of Thai, the entrance to the 
Kurram Valley. 

The Kurram Valley stretches in a north-westerly direction 
for about 60 miles in a straight line from Thai. The valley 
is broadest at its head, where it is about 15 miles across. From 
Thai to Sadda the border is only a few miles trom the left 
bank of the Kurram, and rans along the base of the Ziamakht 
and Orakzai hills, which every here and there reach down to 
the river banks itself. On the right bank our territory ex- 
tends through low hills for about 25 miles to the Khost border. 
Beyond Sadda the valley opens out into what appears to be a 
big plain. As a matter of fact there is very little level ground, 
except near the banks of the river. What seems a plain is 
really a long regular slope, much cut up by nullas, which 
rises at a considerable gradient from the left bank of the river 
to the base of the Safecl Koh, the crest of which is the Afghan 
boundary. 

The arrangements for keeping open the Kohat Pass well 
illustrate the susceptibilities of the Afridis. For nearly half a 
century now we have from fear of harfcing the feelings of the 
Pass villagers, refrained from insisting on their making the 
route practicable for wheeled traffic. The attraction of an in- 
creased subsidy and large profits from road-making contracts 
fails to tempt the Afridi sections concerned to permit a rough 
track being converted into a higfi road, because such conversion 
would, they say, be a visible sign of their loss of independence. 
The Khyber Pass, on the other hand, is traversed by a splendid 
road, made originally more than fifty years ago during the first 
Afghan war, up which the traveller drives as if he were on an 
Indian high road. Notwithstanding that fact, the Kohat Pass 
is still in the same state of nature as it was when first forced 
by us forty years ago, in 1853. We have twice had oppor- 
tunity for insisting on having a proper road made through 
it — once in 1853, when a series of raids and outrages compelled 



116 

oar long-suffering Government to punish tlie Adam Khel section 
of the Afridis ; and once again in 1877-78, when the hills of 
the Jowaki section were occupied by an army for the two 
seveieet winter months, and that clan reduced from prosperity 
to misery. The reason why we have never made a road 
through the Pass is, that Government in its dealings, as well 
with its Indian feudatories and subjects, as with the most bar- 
barous of the trans-border clans, is always scrupulously faith- 
ful to its promises and engagements, and our. original agree- 
ment with those Kohat Pass clans was that they should give us 
a right of way only and no more. 

Besides the Afridis two other Afghan tribes — the Orak- 
zais and Zaimukhts — occupy the southern end of the block 
of mountains with which we are now dealing. The former 
are a powerful collection of clans, capable of bringing over 
6,000 armed highlanders into the field ; the latter are a 
small, strong tribe, whose fighting strength is about 4,000 
men only, but they are all fine stalwart highlanders. Both 
inhabit the mountains immediately to the north-west of the 
Kohat District, and have, owing to the natural strength of 
their fastnesses, and their marauding iustincts, caused our 
frontier villages from first to last a good deal of loss. Expe- 
ditions of the old style were launched against the Orakzais 
in 1855 and 1868, but it was not until 1891 that the tribe 
realised what punishment should mean. Our troops entered 
their hills in mid-winter, quartered their whole country, blew 
up their towers, burnt the woodwork of their villages, des- 
troyed their grain-stores, and did not finally withdraw until 
dominating positions on the Samana range had been occupied 
and garrisoned. A treacherous rising soon after occurred, on 
which the former operations were repeated, but more drasti- 
cally, and resulted in exemplary punishment being inflicted 
on the tribe. Had the work ended with the heavy losses in 
life and property suffered by the Orakzais is those two expe- 
ditions, the lesson would have been an enduring one, and have 
left no open wo and. It was, however, decided at the end of 
the first phase to fortify and garrison several strong com- 
manding positions just inside the enemy's territory. 

In the opinion of the " masterly inactivity " party as op- 
posed to that of " masterly activity " it is these forts that are the 
causeof all the trouble amongst ^ese tribesmen. The Orakzais 



117 

are one of tlie most numerous, powerful, fanatical, and, in some 
respocis, inaccessible of our immediate Border tribes, or rather 
grou[) of tribes : for though usually referred to as one, it must 
be understood in an ethnographical and not a political sense. 
Their six main divisions are split up into many parties, are 
variously Gar and Sdmil in politics ; and their inter-tribal 
warfare, which has often furiously raged between the Tirah 
Sayuds and Suunis, formed the subject of a special report to 
Government by Cavagnari. Some sections in a great measure 
are dependent on British territory ; others but slightly so ; 
and reprisals are not easy. One, the Daulatzai, has committed 
many acts of hostility ; and against the Bizoti and Rubia Khel 
clans special expeditions have been undertaken, while some of 
the most numerous have so far never given any serious trouble. 
Any ixjlations with them as a body would hardly be possible 
and probably nothing, unless it were lust of plunder or hatred 
of the infidel, would unite together the different elements that 
go to make up a fighting strength estimated at over 25,000 
men. As a body, though not such fine men as the Afridis, 
they are robust, wiry-looking mountaineers ; and though 
opinions differ as to their martial qualities, they admittedly 
shoot very straight. It is more than doubtful if by descent 
they are Pathans ; but if not better, they are probably not 
much worse than their neighbours in the Patlian qualities of 
deceit, avarice, and crnelty. MacGregor says "there is no 
doubt that, like other Pathans, they would not shrink from 
any falsehood, however atrocious, to gain an end. Money could 
buy their services for the foulest deed ; cruelty of the most 
revolting kind would mark their actions to a wounded or help- 
less foe, as much as cowardice would stamp them against 
determined resistance." On the other hand it must not be 
forgotten that they have been embittered by centuries of 
bitter religious feuds and the influence of fanatical teachers; 
they have never had a Government of any decent sort, its 
place bein^ supplied by superstition ; and they do not under- 
stand our theory of tolerance or non-interference. They are 
certainly not worse than the Afridi — to whom these crime 
are second nature, but who, under a tight hand, is transformed 
into a soldier ranking with the best in our native army. 

It must be remembered that the little forte along the 
Samana range are all of kutcha construction. They are only 
garrisoned by a few sepoys and are not intended or expected 



118 

to resist a long siege. The great difficulty wliieb lias to be 
contended with by the garrison Is generally that of getting 
a water-supply, and when a siege is on, this can only be done 
by a raid, as the tanks hold only a sraall supply. 

"^hen the first rnmours of impending trouble in the valley 
beca'^ie known, the forces at Parachinar, near the site of the 
old Kurram Fort, were as follows : — 

2 Small guns of Derajat Mountain Battery. 

Half SqnadroQ of 3rd Punjab Cavalry. 

Wing of Isfc Battalion, 5th Gurkhas. 

2 Companies of 36th Sikhs. 

300 of the Kurram Militia armed with sniders. 

It was on the 15th that the first intimation was re- 
ceived at Kohat of the intention to attack the Samana out- 
posts, and the following column was held in readiness to move 
at a moment's notice : — 

5th Punjab Infantry (under Captain R. F. Jameson), 

4 Guns of Derajat Mountain Battery (under Captain J. L. Parker). 

1 Squadron of 3rd Punjab Cavalry. 

It was reported that the Musazai section of the 
Orakzais had risen and was descending in force on the Kurram- 
Thal road, the nearest point of which is the post of 
Sadda, held by a native officer and thirty men of the 36th Sikhs. 
At this time General Yeatman-Biggs left Rawalpindi with 
his staff to assume command of the troops between Kohat 
and Kurram. Several defiant acts of the Musazai were reported, 
and probably they would have done a great deal more had not 
our officials organized and armed the Turi tribesmen in the vil- 
lages most likely to be attacked. The Musazai are very old 
offenders, and it was on all hands hoped that Government 
would march through the country and " lift the purdah " 
thoroughly. 




119 



CHAPTER XXV. 



CAPTURE OF THE UBLAX PASS. 

N tlie 25tli August news was brought in from 
Mahomedzai, the fort which is situated near the foot | 
of the Ublan Pass, that some sniping had been going 
on at night, and that the enemy had occupied the 
sangars which had been the scene of the defeat of our 
troops 29 years ago. The same day Major Bewicke Copley, 
Intelligence Officer, and Captain E. El. A. Wake, Orderly 
Officer to General Yeatman-Biggs, rode out from Kohat and 
renocnoitred the ground. The next night the levy post was 
ruhsed by some Bizotis and Utinan Khels, one man was killed, 
on ehavildar and one man wounded, and the remaining levies 
fled for refuge to Mahomedzai. At dusk on the 26th 
Mahomedzai was reinforced by one company of the 2nd P. I. r' 
under Captain L. E. Cooper. At 4 a.m. on the 27th a force i 
consisting of 1 Squadron 3rd Punjab Cavalry, 6 Guns No. 9 
Field Battery, 2 Companies Royal Scots Fusiliers, and the 2ad 
Punjab Infantry moved out from Kohat to attack the Pass. 
General Yeatman-Biggs arrived on the scene at daybreak, and 
the guns took up a position near a tank on the plain at the foot 
of the Pass and opened fire at 2,200 yards. After some very 
pretty shooting Major A. S. Wedderburn succeeded in almost 
completely silencing the enemy's frontal fire and hIso that on 
the crags to our left, but the latter afterwards broke out again 
daring the advance. Dispositions were then made for the 
attack, the 2nd Punjab Infantry leading and the Royal 
Scots Fusiliers in reserve, with the squadron of the 
3rd Punjab Cavalry aa escort to the guns. The main 
attack advanced up the centre of the Pass, and when shout 
half way up there found themselves exposed to a galling and 
very accurate fire, coming chiefly from the left flank, where 
there were a number of .sharp-shooters concealed among.st some 
Bteep crags overlooking the Pass, These crags were a thorn 
in the side during the whole process of the engagement— they 
are perpendicular and quite inaccessible, and it is impossible 
either to scale or to outflank them. Here a number of the 
enemy remained concealed, keeping up a galling fire, and 



120 

filtliougli volleys were continnallj- fired at flem, it was fonnd 
impossible ti> dislodge theio. About 8 a.m. the koial was gained, 
Lieuteii-uit A. M. S. iilsmie, Adjutant of the 2nd Pniijab In- 
fantry, who had led his company most g;i]laDtly from first to 
last, being the first to arrive at the summit. • The enemy did 
not wait to try conclnsions at close quarters, but were seen 
rapidly retreating in a fairly compact body down the other side 
of the Pass, where they crossed the Bara River and entered the 
Tillage beyond. Volleys were fired after them, both from the 
main attack and also from the men of the 2nd Punjab Infantry 
on the 1 ight. 

Meanwhile the right nttack had been having some sharp 
work : after fighting their way from lidge they gair.ed the 
crest and swept the enemy before them, the two companies 
being w^ell lead by Captain C. M. Eales and Subadar 
Bhuta Ram respectively. The troops had to fight their way 
up a rocky and almost precipitous hill with little or no avail- 
able cover, under a burning sun, and exposed to a heavy fire. 
The heat indeed was terrific, and the Enropean troops suffered 
a good deal, one man dying of heat apoplexy. No water w^as 
procurable, and the ground was too bad to allow of pack mules 
being brought up. 

The casualties during the advance were 1 sepoy, 2ud 
Punjab Infantry killed, and Subadar Akhbar Khan, 2nd 
Punjab Infcutry and 2 sepoys w^ounded. 

The retirement was begun about 10-30 A.M. and was carried 
out in echelon, the main body moving ofi^ first down the centre 
ctf the Pass, followed'in turn by the Royal Scots Fusiliers and the 
two companies of the 2nd Punjab Infantry who had originally 
advanced on the right. The enemy promptly followed up, and 
it was now that most of the casualties occurred. Dui-ing all 
this time the snipers concealed among the crags on the left had 
kept up a galling fire, and they now kept movingdown and harass- 
ing our rear-guard. Aboi:! h.aif way down Captain Baird Smith 
and Lieutenant L. A. North, both of the Royal Scots Fusiliers, 
were severely wounded, the former in the ankle and the latter 
in the stomach, the bullet by a fortunate chance running round 
under the ribs and coming out without having penetrated very 
deeply. Surgeon-Captain W. G. Beyts and Surgeon-Lieute- 
nant H. P. K. Bamfield, A. M. S., rendered prompt and 
eflScient aid to the wounded ; the former with the aid of a sepoy 



121 

arrying a wounded officer for some distance down the hill under 
ii, heavy fire when the grouiul was too bad for doolies to be 
used. The retirement was well and steadily carried out, but 
the troops on reaching the foot of the Pass were almost com- 
pletely exhausted, 16 men of the Eoyal Scots Fusiliers having 
been knocked over by the sun. How ever tongas had been sent out 
from Kohat for these and the wounded, and after a short rest the 
remainder marched back to Ciintonments going well and strong, 
and arriving cheering and singing. 

The total casualties were : 1 Private, Royal Scots Fusiliers, 
and 1 sepoy, 2nd Punjab Infantry killed; 2 Ofi&cers, Royal 
Scots Fusilif^rs, 2 W. 0., 2nd Punjab Infantry and 8 sepoys 
"wounded, of whom two have since died. It is said that several 
of the enemy were dressed in khaki and. appeared to be old. 
sepoys both from the steadiness and accuracy of their fire, and 
from the mannei' in which they at ouce disliugiiished the officers. 
They were armed chiefly with sniders. Since this engagement 
the Ublan Pass has been quiet, no sniping or other sign of 
hostility having been observed. 

The reports received from Thai, on the 30th, were alarm- 
ing. A sowar carrying ielegrams on beyond Thai (the wire 
being unwoikable) rode out eight miles and then returned, 
finding the polioe post, where he ex})ected a relief, deserted. 
Ijetters and telegrams received told of fighting on tlie Samanas 
and the bin niiig of several of our posts by the Orakzais. News 
of the figliting in the Khyber, and that the tribes between 
Peshawar and Koliat were up, bad by now reached our borders. 
The tribes, already worked on by the Mullahs, determined to 
rise in earnest. Sadda post, which up till now had been held by 
36 men only, wa>< reinforced by 25 rifles. During the night 
there was some firing near Sadda, but nothing serious. 

On the night of August 30th the first attack in force 
took place. Late in the afternoon, the signallers in Sadda 
post saw with a telescope a large gathering headed hy 
Mullahs with standards advancing across the border in the 
direction of Bhalish Khel post. The latter is merely a 
tower with a small courtyard on one side of it, in which 
are the huts in which the garrison live. The post is 
held by 20 men of the Kurram Militia. Just before dusk 
the enemy closed in round the tower and began a fusil- 
lade, which lasted till past mid-night. The attacking force 



122 

was reported to be 1^00 strou? ; there wcreprobably. 2,000 
men out altogether, some of whom did not partake in fhe 
attack. 

No doubt they trusted in their orerwhelmmg nuinhers 
to overpower the small garrison. But the latter fought splen- 
didly, yet another testimony to the faitbfnlness of oar levies 
under the most trying of circnm stances. The havildar in 
command, an Afridi, when his attacking fellow-tribesmen 
called to him by namp again and again to come over with 
his rifles, replied with volleys. 

About midnight the defenders had only 20 rounds each 
left, and the fire slackened somewhat as the ammunition had 
to be husbanded. The Afridis noticing this, pressed and 
hewed the gate down with axes. But the garrison, when the 
gate went down, retreated into the tower after killing two 
of the enemy as they entered the gateway. The brave little 
garrison was at the mercy of its enraged foe. Blood had 
been spilt and it is not in the Pathan nature to pardon such 
a deed— even from a brother. Fortunately at this moment 
help arrived from Sadda. Fifty of the levies there, belonging 
to the Malik Khels, who are famous for their fighting quali- 
ties, turned up in the nick of time, and the enemy exaggerating 
their numbers made off to the hills. It is a pity they did 
not wait a little longer, as fifty more of the Kurram Militia 
were close up, having been sent by Captain E. W. S. K. 
MacoBchy from Hassan AH, five miles off, as soon as he realised 
that the post was being very hard pressed. 

The very gallant way the garrison behaved, speaks volumes 
for the pluck and determination of the Militia. Their soldierly 
qualities could scarcely have been subjected to a severer test. 
The Malik Khels certainly deserve their reputation for reckless 
daring. 

The loss on the other side, besides the two men killed in 
the gateway, is not known, but it must have been considerable. 




123 



CHAPTER XXVI. 



FIRST SIEGE AND RELIEF OF THE SAMANA. 

EWS from the solitary outposts on Sam ana was 
anxiously looked for, and when it came it was 
found that the attack which had heen feared had ac- 
tually been made. The Samana Range runs east 
and west ; to the north of it lies the Khanki Valley, 
land to the south the Miranzai Valley. 

News was received at Fort Lockhart on Angust 26th, that 

a large force of Orakzais, including Mamozai, Ali Sherzai and 

iAli Khel would attack the Sheiiowri border police post below 

Ciulistan. Heavy firing was heard all night from Gulistan, 

i'which was held by 130 men of the 36th Sikhs under Major 

"C. H. DesVoeux, 36th Sikhs. At dawn of the 27fcli, the big 

[hills above Galistan were seen to be held by the enemy. 

~Major DesVoeux, with Lieutenant A. K. Blair and 60 

men, made a reconnaissance, but finding the enemy in 

great strength were obliged to retire, which was steadily 

executed under fire. At 7-30 a.m. news of the above was* 

received by Colonel J. Haughton at Fort Lockhart, who 

started at once with 150 ritles and arrived at Gulistan at 

9-30. Seeing the enemy in great strength in a very strong 

position, extending over two miles, it was determined to wire 

for reinforcements from Hangu. At 12 Lieutenants R. G. Munn • 

and Blair and half a company started out to cut off parties of 

the enemy moving down to water. After firing a few volleys 

on the enemy the pickets retired hastily, but not before 

Lieutenant Blair had been severely wounded. 

On the 29th the Kahi police post was raided and burnt. 
The intention of the tribesmen to make an attack on Sadda 
had been averted by the timely and unexpected arrival of rein- 
forcements which was a complete surprise for the Afridis, who 
at once dispersed. 

Fort Gulistan, distant 4| miles from Fort Lockhart, had 
been practically invested by the tribesmen since the 27th 



]24 

August. The lashkar, numbering some 6,000 men, for some days 
and nights contented itself with long range sniping cutting an 
unhappy hhistis throat, carrying off Lis mules and such like 
exploits ; but on the 3rd at 2 p.m. they made a determined attack 
on the horn work, first occupying Picket Plill, distant 350 yards, 
where Lieutenant Blair was shot through the lung, and after- 
wards advancing to within 10 yards of the hedge under cover 
of a heavy fire at ranges from 150 to 300 yards. They were 
able by the terraced formation of the ground to approach 
socui^ely so close that they at last fired tlie hedge, a stout 
obstacle well pegged and weighted with stones. 

Now occurred the gallant incident wiiicTi called forth 
high encomiums from the Commander in-Chief. On Major 
JDesVoeux calling for volunteer sepoys, Sunder Singh 
and Harma Singh sprang out and under a hea,vy fire tore 
down the burning portion. They sacceeded in their task, and 
returned safely. Again the fire broke out on the opposite 
Ride, and the same two men assisted by four others again per- 
formed their task, one being shot through the leg. The names 
of these two gallant fellows were sent to head-quarters. 

The attack continued with slight intermission till neon next 
day. During the night attack volunteers were called for to light 
a bonfire 100 yards from the post ; again the call was promptly 
answered, andtvvo more sepoys proved their devotion to their 
salt by performing their task under a very heavy fire and 
practically in the midst of the enemy. 

Orders were now issued to General Yeatman-Biggs to send 
out a convoy of supplies to Fort Lockhart, v»'hilst at the same 
time the Samana Range would be cleared of the foe. Accord- 
ingly on the 7th September the force left Hangu. It consisted 
of the l-2rid Gurkhas, in advance, followed by two companies 
of the lloyal Irish, the 2nd Punjab Infantry, half company 
No. 4 Sappers and Miners, No. 9 Field Battery, escorted by one 
squadron of the 3rd Punjab Cavalry, and one squadron of the 
ord Bengal Cavalry. Two companies of the Royal Irish under 
Colonel C. G. Mansell, 3rd Punjab Cavalry. The" 1 -3rd Gurkhas 
afeo joined at Pat Darband marching from Doaba. Little 
happened to the force and the convoy, which consisted of 30 
days supplies for the hefJf battalion, 36th Sikhs, garrisoning 
the Samana. 



125 

The position up to tlie 10th of September was this. Af ter th 
fall of the Khyber the Orakzais gathered their Zas^/car and made 
thei r first effort at the Ublan Pass, while small raiding parties 
moved towards Kurram. They were not very successful in 
their efforts, but they saw that isolated posts held by the Bor- 
der Militia or Police lay open to attack, eask and west of the 
Samana, and they raided Shenowrie, Lakha and Saifulderr, 
and even threatened Hxngu and Thai. The two columns fiom 
Kohat forced them back into the Khanki Valley, and they had 
then to consider whether they should renew their raids. The 
Orakzai would, probably, have rested content with what they 
had achieved in the burning of a few posts, but this did not 
fit in at all with the aims of the Mullahs who were bent on 
making further mischief. The Afridis were therefore worked 
upon by Saiad Akbar to gather again and to make a demon- 
stration in a new direction. It was resolved to leave the Pesha- 
war border uotouched,- owing no doubt to the strength of our 
forces in that direction, and to make a big demonstration 
against the Samana. Accordingly a contingent, said to number 
10,000 at least, marched into the Khanki Valley, where the 
Orakzai were already assembled, and the Daulatzai clan were 
directed to collect behind the Ublan Pass. It Avas obviously 
intended <o carry our forts on the Samana and to raid Hangu, 
Ibrahimzai and even Kohat itself, if any marked success was 
gained. This resolve was carried out and for days fierce 
fighting took place in the Samana country. 

Now we come to one of the saddest yet most glorious 
pages in the history of the risings — the siego and fall of the 
Saragarhi Fort with its noble little garrison of Sikhs. 




126 



THE DEFENCE AND FALL OF SARAGARHI. 

CHAPTER XXVII. 

IMMOLATION OF TWENTY-ONE SIKHS. 

*ROM the map it will be seen that the little post at 
Saragarhi is about oue aud-a-half miles distant from 
Fort Lockhart, and is situated in the midst of the 
Samana hills at an altitude of about sis thousand feet. 
It was built on the same pattern as all the other so- 
called forts, in the form of a square, with bastions at each corner 
and witfi a w^oodcn door, heavily studded with iron, flush with 
the ground. Inside this serai were the quarters of the little 
band of Sikh sepoys who formed its garrison on Sunday, the 
12th of September. These forts are not built to resist a 
siege, and in the case of assault by tribesmen in large bodies 
they are certain death-traps for the garrisons. They are 
built for occupation by levies as a general rule, and the 
principle seems to be that in case of assault the men ordinarily 
occupying them can manage to arrange terms with their 
assailants and so escape slaughter. It seems a haphazard sort 
of arrangement and is particularly deadly when war rumours 
necessitate its fortification by regular troops, who are not 
in such fortunate case as to be able to surrender and escape 
with their lives. Particularly was this bo with the slender 
garrison that occupied it on the 12th September. They were 
twenty-one in number only and they belonged to the 36tli 
Sikhs, a regiment which had never been under fire. 

A word or two regarding this new regiment which 
fleshed its virgin arms to such purpose on the heights o£ 
Samana, is necessary. The regiment was raised ten years 
ago by Colonel, "Jim" Cooke and Captain H. R. Holmes, the 
latter the biggest man of his time in the Indian army. It had 
originally been raised in 1852, but was disbandfd in 1882. The 
story goes that Captain Holmes when out recruiting in the 
Lndhiana District used to challenge all the young men of a 
village to wrestle with him on the undetstiiMding that all 
competitors should enlist in the new regiment. The Sikhs are 



127 

great wrestlers, but tliey found ilie burly Englishman one too 
many for them, with the result that within a few months of the 
orders for raising it being received the new regiment appeared 
before the Commander-in-Chief at Meernt. A finer body of 
men than the 36th Sikhs is not to be found in the Indian 
Army. It left Delhi for the front 777 strong, every man being 
5 feet 8 inches and over in height with the minimum of a 
36-ificli chest. They were in 1891 sent to join the Manipur 
Field Force, but never had the luck to go'to the fi-ont. Thus 
till this year they had never had their baptism of fire. 

Notwithstanding this latter fact, however, they were Sikhs, 
and the traditions of the Khalsa nation have taught us what 
to expect from her sons. They have always gone fearlessly and 
dauntlessly into danger and surrender is not of their creed. 
The frontier of north-west India is an old battle field for the 
descendants of Raujit Singh, and glorious fights were fought 
in its hills and valleys in years gone by. It is full of 
reminiscences of byegone glory, and what is more, the personal 
animosities which those times of Sikh punishment of frontier 
aggression engendered still hold remorseless sway in Sikh 
and Path an alike. When these two meet there is no quarter 
asked and none given. The sepoy smites for the glory 
of his race against his traditional foe, and the Pathan kills 
that he may mutilate the body of the infidel and rob him of 
paradise. 

We are told that it was absolutely necessary to maintain 
Fort Saragarhi as a transmitting signalling station between 
Gulistan and Port Lockhart, and that there was ample 
ammunition, water and food, also that the fort was 
impregnable except to artillery. This is not the place to 
criticise the military necessities which, in order to maintain 
an essential position, leave its little force so weak that its 
immolation is inevitable. 

The very meagre account of the defence and fall of 
Saragarhi is supplied by a signaller at Saragarhi who kept 
in communication to the last, and by the on-lookers at Fjrt 
Lockhart and Gulistan who, powerless to render assistance, 
witnessed the grim tragedy to its ssbdjinale. 

An overwhelming force of Afridis, put down by the 
observers as maoy thousands, was the attacking force, and froi 



12S 

the coinmeiicomeiit fclie siege \Yas of a most determinecl character. 
Time after time the enemy assaulted in force, bat the 
gallaiit little band who held the walls repnlsed the attack 
with terrible slaaghter. The enemy now took shelter nnder 
the rocks clo;je to the fort and kept a hot fire on the defenders 
from a few yards' distance. The Sikhs on the fort walls 
held their posts for hour after hour, but again and again the 
enemy returned to j}ho siege regardless of their heavy losses 
in dead and wounded. 

Desperate as w-as the position of the garrison at Fort 
Lockhart., the heroic struggle of their Sikh comrade-in-arms 
was more than they could gaze tamely upon. The enemy were 
to be eouiited in thousands, all well armed, and had the entire 
garrison at Fort Lockhart — and even it was miserably 
weak— turned out to the rescue of the beleaguered few, 
such an act must of necessity have meant annihilation, 
without in any way accomplishing the object intended. 
Nevertheless an attempt was made, and one hundred rifles of 
the Fort Loelihart garrison marched out of the little fort. The 
intention w^as to divert, if possible, the enemy's attention. 

What was almost certain to occur in such case now re- 
sulted. The tribesmen, realising the small numbers of the little 
band in the open, jubilantly rushed forward and opened out with 
the intention of outflanking them. The danger was too great, 
it would have been bat a glorious and unavailing sacrifice to 
have waited such an overpowering on-rush, and reluctantly 
the rifles were ordered back into the fort. 

Now the fats of the gallant Sikhs at Saragarhi was 
certain. It was only a matter of time. The door was attack- 
ed, and the little garrison slowly but surely was reduced by 
the enemy's marksmen. For six and-a-half hours these heroes 
fought their great fight, and held their own until it became 
impossible with the few unwounded men left to arm both the 
walls and guard the entrance door. 

> The end must come sooner or later, bat until such time 
the Martinis of the Sikhs cracked out defiance and death ta 
the enemy. There is nothing even in romance, unless it is the 
siege of Torquilstone in " Ivanhoe," which approaches in 
grandeur this defence by our Sikh sepoys against the rushes of 
fanatical hordes of Ghazis. From Fort Gulistan two men were 



129 

noticed under the bastion in the north-west corner of Saragarhi 
making a hole in the wall. They were covered both from the 
view and fire of the defenders by a fatal defect in the con- 
struction of the fort. The heavy door was attacked witli 
axes, but for long it resisted all attempts to break it in. Now 
the attack on the wall was successful, and at the dead 
ano-le of the flanking tower the enemy crowding over their 
dead and wounded entered the breach and fought their way 
into the enclosure. But even yet all was not over. 

Stubbornly the noble few who were left retreated into the 
serai, and hard indeed did each defender die. Large numbers of 
the enemy had now gained entrance to the serai by ladders with 
which they had escaladed the walls. Surrounded on all hands, 
the garrison was mercilessly cut down. 

One solitary Sikh only was now left and he defended the 
o-uard-room. Magnificent was the resistance which he offered, 
and alone at his post he accounted for twenty of the enemy 

one for eacb of his poor dead comrades. It is consoling to 

think that even at the end it was not to the weapons of his 
overwhelming foes that this hero fell. During this last glorious 
stand, when the Afridis were being hewn down by the solitary 
sepoy, the enemy, despairing of conquering the last of the 
Sikhs, set fire to the guard-room, and, fighting with his face to 
the foe, the last Khalsa soldier finally perished in the flames. 

Thus the enemy were robbed of their last and most 
terrible foeman, whose body was saved by the flames from the 
horrible mutilation to which his comrades-in arms — dead and 
dying alike — were subjected by the fiends whom they resisted 
so long. 

At half -past four, after nearly seven hours of onslaught 
aud slaughter. Fort Saragarhi fell into the hands of the 
tribesmen. How dearly our Sikh sepoys sold their lives may 
be gathered from the fact that the enemy admitted that close 
upon two hundred of themselves had been killed outright, 
whilst the numbers of wounded must have greatly exceeded 
this total. 

Let me here step aside a little and detail the scene at 
Saragarhi a few days later when General Yeatman- Biggs' 
relief force reached the dismantled fort. It was a piteous 
sight. The little post was levelled almost to the ground and 



130 

amid the ruins of the fort they had so gallantly defended lay 
the stripped and horribly mutilated bodies of the little garrison. 

Our troops looked lingeringly at the grim spectacle, and 
the hardened expressions on faces of Sikh and Gurkha alike 
(for these latter also had seen their dead) boded ill for the 
ruthless murderers. It is impossible to describe the nature 
of the mutilation which these wild Pathaus inflict on their 
helpless enemies — it is revolting in the extreme. As corps-e 
after corpse, maimed and disfigured, was drawn forth the com- 
rades of the dead men looked on in terrible silence. 

An examination of the position revealed more details of 
the grim Sunday fight and showed clearly that the breach in 
the dead angle of the flanking tower had been caused by the 
removal of a corner stone after which mass after mass of 
masonry fell and hundreds of the infuriated devils swarmed 
like ants through the breach and over the walls. Tales also 
came from the enemy corroborating the battle in the guard- 
room — grimmer and more deadly even than Alan Breck's 
defence of the Roundhouse of which Stevenson told us — and 
how one wounded Sikh who lay on his charpoy when the 
Afridis surged into the serai shot down four men before his 
death-blow came. 

Thus died a band of heroes faithful unto death to the 
Sir'ka7' whose salt they had eaten. Such valorous deeds need 
no eulogy. Well may the Khalsa nation be proud of her sons, 
and England of the brave men who fight and die in her 
quarrels in far distant lands. 



CHAPTER XXVIII. 



THE GALLANT DEFENCE OF GULISTAN. 

HEN the sacking of Fort Saraghari was complete 
the tribesmen on Monday, the 13th, turned their 
attention to Fort Cavagnari, which they attacked 
with great determination, their lashkars cover- 
iuc" all the hills about it, many thousands of 
men being present. At 2 o'clock in the afternoon information 




131 

reached Hangu from Fort Lockhart that Gulistan was closely 
beset and that several casualties had occurred amoug the 
garrison. The Officer Commanding Fort Cavagnari had made 
a sortie and captured three standards, but thereafter he had 
to act on the defensive. He adopted the ruse of parleying 
with the enemy under the pretence of surrendering, and in this 
way got a messenger through to Fort Lockhart describing his 
position, which was becoming critical, owing to the enormous 
numbers attacking. When General Yeatman-Biggs at Hangu 
learned what had taken place he sent a native signaller of the 
3rd Bengal Cavalry down the road to Doaba to get a message 
through to the garrison. The sowar galloped twelve miles 
along the road and succeeded in heliographing before sunset 
that help would arrive next morning. 

The fortifications of Forts Lockhart and Cavagnari are 
very strong, though they are not capable of holding many 
troops, while the scarcity of water prevents a Brigade remaining 
on the Samana for more than two days at a time. 

At 8-20 A. 51, on the 12th, the enemy were seen in large 
numbers coming up the valley north of Gulistan. Lieutenant 
Pratt and 20 rifles of the 36th Sikhs were at once sent to cut 
them off. The enemy, however, turned off to Saragarbi Fort, 
so Lieutenaut Pratt was recalled. The enemy now appeared in 
large numbers on the Saragarbi hills, and at the same time 
other large bodies surrounded Fort Cavagnari, which is two and 
a half miles distant, and prevented the small garrison of tbat 
place giving any assistance to Saragarbi. About 10 a. m, the 
enemy rushed upon Saragarbi in great force, estimated at the 
time at about six thousand men. 

In the meantime large bodies of the enemy had been 
keeping up a hot and continuous fire on Fort Cavagnari 
and several casualties had occurred. Fort Cavagnari is of 
the same design and construction as Fort Saragarbi, and 
what the enemy had done at one place they could easily do at 
the other. Seeing this, Major DesVoeux ordered the lower 
rooms in the bastions to be cleared, and barricades constructed 
of flour bags to guard the holes should the enemy succeed 
in making them. All the water that was possible had been 
filled up in the morning. The garrison were now cut off fram 
water. The same state of affairs continued all night; thousands 



132 

V ©f the enemy ^vitb 15 standards being close under the walls. 
The firing was so heavy that it was impossible to move about. 

/ The whole garrison stood to their posts all night. On the 

■'morning of the 13th things were very serious. The enemy, 

estimated at fifteen thousand, were all round, but still closer. 

Water was getting low, the men being on short allowance. 

There was no water at all for the mules and horses. 

A havildar volunteered to capture one of the standards which 
vas within 20 yards of the south walls, and started with 16 men, 
and charged the enemy with fixed bayonets. The enemy were, 
iowever, found in great strength with three standards not pre- 
viously seen. The little party, nothing daunted, simply laid 
down at a distance of six yards and fired into the enemy. The 
©Demy replied with great effect, many of the gallant Sikhs being 
■wounded. Seeing that, another havildar with 11 more men 
jumped over the wall to help their comrades and get them back. 
Well they know what leaving wounded or dead bodies with their 
frontier foes means. They rushed again on the enemy, and 
driving them back captured all three standards, which were 
carried into the fort amidst ringing cheer's. Fourteen men 
were wounded in the sortie ; but the moral effect was great. 

Well might Sir George White, our Commander-in-Chief gloat 
over such splendid courage, which revels in a grim old-fashioned 
love of the fight. 

The Sikhs, who had now been 20 hours on duty, 
leturned to their posts in great spirits. This was the turn- 
mg point in the defence. And it is thus even satisfactory 
to find that such a deed of daring was done for an useful purpose, 
^hich it achieved. The Captured standards represented three 
i&ections of the Mamozais : they were said to be greatly dis- 
couraged and moved further off, having lost many killled and 
wounded, they being left on the ground. The main body of 
the enemy, however, with 12 standards kept close to the walls, 
keeping up a continuous fire on the fort and outworks at close 
jancre, and many more casualties occurred. During the day the 
enemv got the range of all the doors and passages exactly. All 
j>arts*^of the hornwork and most of the fort is commanded by 
the hills to the west, and sanfjars had been built all round and 
-were lined with the enemy's rifles. The garrison had been much 
weakened by their losses, but all the men who could do so, 



133 

returned to their posts as soou as their wounds had been baud- 
aged. 

As it was not known when relief might arrive ; it was 
found necessary to husband the ammunition carefully. Tliafc 
this was done with good efPect is shown by the fact, that at the 
end of three days' fighting it was found that one of the enenay 
had been kiHed or wounded for every 35 rounds fired. This 
includes the ammunition expended sharply to cover the sorfeie 
parties and other parties moving about the fort. On the even- 
ing of the 13th a helio was received from General Yeatmait- 
Biggs saying that reinforcements would arrive on the 14th, and 
the sound of field guns firing was heard in the Mirauzai Valley, 

The whole of the night of the 13th was spent on duty on the 
walls, and in the morning the enemy, who had been firing aU 
night, were found to occupy the same position. The hospital now 
was crowded with wounded, and Surgeon-Captain C.B. Prall was 
overwhelmed with work. The Saragarhi bills were seen to be 
crowded with the enemy, who also occupied Samana Suka and 
the whole of the hills west of Gulistan. The trials of the 
gallant garrison however were nearly at an end : relief was close 
at hand. The shells of the relieving force were seen bursting 
over Saragarhi. 

At 12 noon on the 14th the Saragarhi heights had 
been taken by General Teatman- Biggs and by 1. p. ȣ. 
a great retreat of the enemy beg;in ; their retreat soon turning 
into a rout. It being no longer necessary to be careful of am- 
munition, fire was opened from all parts of the fort and its out- 
works on the retreating enemy, many of whom fell. At 2 p. m:, 
the advanced guard of the relieving force marched into Fort 
Cavagnari and the garrison were relieved. The officers and men 
had now been under arms for 52 hours, and had actually been om. 
their posts for 50 hours without a rest. The enemy who attacked 
Saragarhi and Fort Cavagnari were the Mamuzais, Ali Khels 
and Ali Sherzais, together with the Afridi hishhar. The enemy 
lost 500 killed and wounded; but this does not include the 
slightly wounded who were able to walk away, the number 
of whom it is impossible to ascertain. 

The total losses of the detachment of the SStfc 
Sikhs at Fort Cavagnari on the 12th, 13th and 14th were 
44 killed and wounded, besides two followers killed. Thk 



ij 



134 

does not include the 21 killed at Saragarhi. General Yeatmau- 
Biggs afterwards inspected the fort and the detachment 
of the 36th Sikhs. Addressing the men, he complimented 
them on the splendid work they had done, and told them he 
would forward to the Commander-in-Chief the names of those 
who had particularly distinguished themselves by their valour. 
He also visited the hospital and spoke a few words to each of 
the wounded. 



CHAPTER XXIX. 



CLEARING THE SAMANA. 




FTER the first relief of Samaua the enemy evacuated 
the ridge, and on the afternoon of the 10th September 
the Intelligence Officer with General Yeatman-Biggs 
saw a large force of Af ridis crossing the Samphaga 
Pass into the Khanki Valley. This force was 
augmented by large numbers of Orakzais and it was re- 
ported that an advance on Hangu and Saraana was medi- 
tated. The enemy camped that night at Khurappa and large 
numbers were plainly seen at Fort Lockhart. At 10 a. m. on 
the 10th instant, the 3rd Gurkhas were sent down to recon- 
noitre down some spurs to the north of Fort Lockhart. Small 
bodies of the enemv were seen, and long range volleys were fired 
by the 3rd Gurkhas. Three men were seen to fall. The troops 
returned to Fort Lockhart by 5 p. m. At 6 o'clock the next 
evening the following troops under General Yeatman-Biggs 
moved from Fort Lockhart towards Lakha to intercept the 
enemy crossing the Tawana to attack Hangu : — 

Two Companies 18th Royal Irish. 

2nd Punjab Infantry. 
l-2nd Gurkhas. 
l-3rd Gurkhas. 



135 

The rear-guard was composed of the 3rd Gurkhas under 
Captain V. A. Ormsby, and was later joined by three companies 
of the 2ud Gurkhas under Captain J. G. Robinson, the whole 
being commanded by Colonel Pulley, 3rd Gurkhas. 

Hardly had the head of the column reached its bivouac than 
firing began. The Orakzais, hitherto kept in check by our posses- 
sion of Gogra, now swarmed down on the rearandbegan a deter- 
mined attack on the convoy. Any one acquainted with the way of 
the useful but unwieldy unth can picture for himself the con- 
fusion produced at night on a steep, narrow hill road by 51 loose 
camels without nose strings and maddened by fear and wounds. 
Both the 2nd and 3rd Gurkhas behaved with great steadiness, 
fendingoff attacks which at times almostassumed the proportion 
of a rush, with section volleys, and doing all they could to bring 
the convoy in. To the main body on the hill beyond, the sight, 
but for the necessary anxiety, was most picturesque. In the 
bright moonlight every flash could be seen, and the yells of the 
enemy and the sound of their war drums came clearly to their ears. 
As the bivouac was neared, the road wound down in a very nasty 
wooded ravine. Two companies, however, of the 2nd Punjab In- 
fantry took up a position to cover the retirement, and doing their 
work very smartly the whole arrived in camp by 2 a.m. Here 
they endeavoured to sleep, though desultory firing went on all 
night. At daybreak an attempt was made to recover some of the 
lost camels, but it was found the Orakzais had been before and 
looted nearly all the food. Our casualties were one officer, Captain 
Robinson, l-2nd Gurkhas, slightly wounded, and 12 Gurkhas 
killed and wounded, and about 40 camels stolen or strayed. 

Another account of this rear-guard action says :— About 9 
p. M. the rear-guard was fired on by the enemy, who, instead of 
proceeding to Hangu, had halted on a spur on the north side of 
Samana. The force of the enemy was estimated at from 3,000 
to 4,000. It is not known how many actually made the attack 
on the rear guard, but the rear guard was hotly engaged from 
9 P. M. till 2 A. sr., the enemy many times surrounding the 
rear guard, and they got up to within 20 paces more than 
once, but never really charged home. In one place one com- 
pany of the 2nd Gurkhas under Captain Robinson was sur- 
rounded and almost cut ofE till ten men of the 3rd Gurkhas 
came back and routed the enemy by continuous and steady 
volleys ; and the behaviour of both the 2ud and 3rd Gurkhas 



136 

was excellent under most trying conditions, the fire discipline 
being very good indeed. The 3rd Gurkhas rushed two positions 
strongly held by the enemy, who would not wait for the bayo- 
net : casualties, 2nd Gurkhas, rank and file killed 3, wounded 
5, and Captain Robinson was hit in the arm by a spent bullet. 
Besides these 5 men had their clothes cut by bullets. The 3rd 
Gurkhas lost 1 rifleman killed and 3 wounded ; the 2nd P. I. 
two killed. The casualities were wonderfully small, but the 
attack was made at night and the firing of the enemy was very 
erratic and they never really charged home. Jemadar Harkbir 
Gurung, 2nd Gurkhas, with about 8 men, succeeded, in most 
difficult ground, in bringing in a wounded man, and the rifle and 
accoutrements of one who was killed, and that in the face of 
30 or 40 men of the enemy, who were about 15 yards off firing 
all the time. The 2nd Gurkhas made a most splendid effort 
to bring in their dead, but were rushed by overwhelming 
bodies of the enemy. The force was to move to Hangu that day. 
The losses of the enemy could not be estimated, but they must 
have been very heavy. Tar Muhammad, the leading Sheikban 
Malik, 5 Malla Khel Maliks, and many smaller men were killed. 

Later news however was received that on the departure 
of the column to Hangu, the enemy attacked the forts on the 
Samana in great force, and captured Saragari, held by 21 men 
of the 36th Sikhs, killing all the Sikhs, who gallantly died at 
their posts, attempting to defend the fort against overwhelming 
numbers. This altered the plans and necessitated a return to 
the Samana. 

Early the next morning, says one of the officers, we started 
for Lakha, an old Police Post recently abandoned by us and burnt 
by the enemy. Here we were promised a sufficiency of good 
water, but on arrival found nothiug but one miserable mud hole. 
Luckily for us humans, the animals refused to touch it so the 
men washed out their mouths and their officers partook of milk 
with a little tea in it. I forgot to mention that the party sent 
after the stores had found the bodies of 3 Gurkhas* badly 
mutilated, and the corpses of nearly 40 tribesmen. Six of their 
Maliks we know were carried off and probably others, so their loss 
was presumably heavy. For the remainder of the day we halted, 
the whole force fairly worn out from w.ant of water. At 3-30 p.m., 
just as we had started on our return to Hangu, we received news 
hj helio that the greater part of the lashkar we bad been hunting 



137 

had doubled on its tracks, and was at that moment investing the 
posts we had left the day before, Saragarhi and Gulistan being 
hard pressed. There was not a drop to drink nearer than 
Hangu, and to fight our way back in the dark without it was, 
in view of the condition of men and animals, a physical impos- 
sibility. Very reluctantly the General, not daring to leave 
Hangu unprotected, followed the convoy, and we toiled painfully 
down the path, much broken in parts by the tribesmen, and at 
6-30 P.M. arrived in camp dead beat. 

All next day we rested as well as we could after the news 
of the fall of Saragarhi which reached us that evenmg, haunted 
by the fear that we should be too late to relieve Gulistan which, 
be it remembered, contained Englishwomen and children. As 
a diversion five squadrons and four field guns were sent off under 
Major H. J. J. Middleton, 3rd Bengal Cavalry, to get as near as 
possible under Gulistan and do what they could. As it 
turned out, this was a good deal, for though their fire at 
that range could not be very effective, their appearance not 
only greatly cheered the beleaguered garrison, but convinced 
the enemy that our advance would be made by Doaba. This 
they showed by breaking up the roads and planting sangars 
against us. At midnight the relieving force started from Hangu 
carrying only great-coats, waterproof-sheets, blankets, and one 
day's provisions, with every pakhal we could muster. The 
whole was concentrated at Lakha by 4-30 a.m., and at daybreak 
we advanced to Gogra Hill. 

As we anticipated, the enemy, though taken by surprise, 
soon took possession of an ideal position on the hill with 
advanced post at Tsalai with 11 standards and about 4,000 
men. They opened a hot and fairly accurate fire on our 
advance, but the guns brought up quickly into the front 
line soon produced an effect, and the 3rd Gurkhas, supported 
by the 2nd Gurkhas, stormed the hill. The enemy's retreat 
was pounded by the guns and long range fire of the Royal 
Irish, and Colonel Haughton, on the west, hurrying down from 
Fort Lockhart with all of the 36th Sikhs and signallers and 
sick of the Eoyal Irish that could be sparecl, materially quick- 
ened their pace. Our force rapidly pushed on for Fort Lock- 
hart, ])assir.g on its way the little post of Sangar, besieged for 
the last 24 hours ; its garrison of 41 men, 36th Sikhs, were 
drawn up, as we passed, proudly displaying a standard they had 



138 

captured in a smart little sortie, the night before. On we 
pushed to Fort Lockhart, and the General mounting the Fort 
tower could see Saragarhi Hill on which the captured post stood, 
covered with the standard and masses of the enemy. At last 
we believed in the oft reported thousands of the lashkar, for 
there must have been at the lowest computation 8,000 in battle 
array. Still no news of Fort Gulistan, so the General ordering 
up the guns, soon had the hill so swept by shrapnel that on the 
advance of the infantry not a soul was found. 

It was a thousand pities, for had we but known it, Gulistan 
was safe for some hours yet, and had we but had the time we 
might have inflicted heavy loss on an enemy whose line of 
retreat would have been open to our fire. However, so far as 
we knew, no time was to be lost, so limbering up, we pushed on 
another two miles, and there on the opposite hill stood the 
fort still bravely holding out. The slopes above and beyond 
were literally packed with swarms of the enemy now warned 
by the sound of our guns that the time for departure was at 
hand. 

At the sight of our skirmishers on the sky-line every 
man of the beleaguered garrison who could stand, wounded or 
whole, sprang to the parapets and opened a heavy fire on the 
now wavering foe. Our guns hurried up and unlimberiug poured 
in their shrapnel, while the infantry, racing down the steep 
hillside did their best with long range volleys to persuade some 
at least of the tribesmen to stay behind. 

The guns under Captain Parker made beautiful practice at 
even extreme ranges, across the wide valley, searching out and 
dispersing every group we could see and putting shell after shell 
into a village where they had imagined themselves at least 
secure. 

But Gulistan was safe, and with lightened hearts some of the 
force pushed on. By 2 p.jJ. they were within its walls. Blackened 
with gunpowder, worn out with 33 hours of continuous toil and 
stress, many bandaged and bloodstained, the garrison still present- 
ed a brave front. Drawn up at the gate were the survivors of the 
sortie— that gallant feat at arms — with the three standards they 
had captured. Out of the original garrison of 165 rifles, 2 had 
been killed, 8 dangerously and some mortally wounded; 8 severe- 
ly and 24 slightly wounded. Of these latter, 9 did not report 



139 

themselves till relief had come. Major C. H. DesVoeux, who had 
his anxieties doubly intensified by the presence of his family, had 
been the life and soul of the defence, guarding against every 
danger and showing an example of cheerfulness and steadfastness 
to all. Lieutenant H. R. E. Pratt, an officer of a year's standing, 
had ably seconded him, though suffering from dysentery ; 
Surgeon-Captain Prall had untiringly tended the wounded under 
heavy fire, helped by Miss Theresa McGrath, Mrs. DesVoeux's 
maid, who amid the flying bullets could be seen here bathing a 
wounded sepoy's head and there tying up another's arm till the 
doctor could see him. Last, not least, every sepoy of this gal- 
lant band did his duty, and at times almost more than his duty, 
in a way worthy of the proud name of Sikh. 

The state of the fort had better be imagined than de- 
scribed. Bearing in mind the number of dead and wounded in 
that small space, and the impossibility of any, but the most 
primitive conservancy arrangements, it is due only to the 
wonderful purity of this mountain air that it was in any way 
endurable. 

Leaving the fort with two mountain guns, and the 2nd 
Punjab Infantry to guard it, the main column returned to Fort 
Lockhart and there bivouacked, having marched since midnight 
24 miles without food and come into action three times. From 
friendly Rabia Kbels, they afterwards learnt that the losses of the 
enemy, all told during these several operations, were over 490, 
including some 180 killed in the taking of Saragarhi. 

The next day the 15th, the General Officer Commanding/ 
visited Gulistan and issued a stirring Force Order extolling 
the heroic defence of these two posts, and promising to forward 
the names of the most distinguislied for valour. Major Des 
Voeux then presented to him his officers and last not least Miss / 
McGrath, worthy, if any, of her Gracious Majesty's notice. He [ 
then visited the wounded, many of whom wore ghastly signs of 
what they had gone through, and gave orders for the remedying 
of the most obvious defects of the post. 

Next day a reconnaissance was carried out to within one 
mile of Kharappa in the Khanki Valley. All villages were 
found em]>ty, and in the distances could be seen men, women, 
and children driving their herds hastily towards Tirah. All 
tended to confirm the reports that the hostile lashkars^ both 
Afridi and Orakzai, had for the time at least utterly dispersed. 



140 

But there could be no doubt of two things, namely, firstly, 
that the march to Lakha saved a serious irruption, viz., Hangu 
into the Miranzai Valley ; and secondly, that but for the 
timely return Forts Gulistan, Sangar and Dhar could not have 
held out another 24 hours. 

On the 15th instant, Mrs, DesVoeux, her four children and 
a nurse, and all sick and wounded were taken from Gulistan to 
Fort Lockhart. 

A search party sent out from Fort Cavagnari discovered 
on the Shinwari road, about one mile from the fort, the dead 
bodies of followers reported missing on the 12th instant. The 
unfortunate men were Sikh cooks, and had gone to collect wood 
for cooking. They were quite unarmed. Their hands and legs 
were fouud tied together and their clothes and bodies were 
burnt. It is believed that they were tied hand and foot and 
burnt to death. 



CHAPTER XXX. 



THE SADDA CAMP ATTACK. 




LL through the early part of September fears had 
been entertained for the safety of Sadda, and day 
after day the tribal jirgalis were reported to be 
advancing to attack the camp. On the night of the 
16th, however, the oft delayed movement was made. 
The vacillation of the tribesmen, however, again allowed relief 
to be sent. On the 15th two field guns were sent from 
Parachiuar, and orders were received at Parachinar that the two 
guns there of No. 2 Derajat Mountain Battery, and the wing of 
the l-Sth Gurkha Rifles were to proceed to Sadda, reaching 
camp by 6 p.m. on the 16th at latest. A wing of the 5th 
Punjab Infantry had been sent away from Sadda on the morn- 
ing of the 16tb, in order to hold Alizai and Thall on the line of 



141 

communicatious to KoLat, and it was necessary for the Gurkhas 
to arrive by the eveniug to take their place, and hold that 
portion of the camp which had been occupied by them. 

Near Sadda our border runa along the base of low rocky 
hills that extend for several miles parallel to the loft bank of the 
Kurram river, at a distance of about three miles from the edge 
of the stream. At Sadda itself, the Kurmana Dara joins the 
main stream almost at right angles. This Kurmana Dara drains 
the country of the Mussazais and Chamkannis, and a large part 
of country occupied by Afridis, and the gorge by which it leaves 
the low hills is the entry into the enemy's countiy through which 
our forces have to advance on Yirah. The defile is at least 11 
miles long, and only 60 yards broad in many places, and flanked 
on both sides by difficult ground ; the tribesmen, if determined, 
should be able to offer a stout resistance to our advance, provid- 
ed they collect in sufficient numbers. From the foot of the low 
hills the ground slopes gradually to the Kurram river. For about 
two miles from the hills this slope is much cut up by deep 
nullahs ; so much so, that what at first sight appears to be a long 
continuous slope, is really a succession of broad nearly flat-top"^ 
ped spurs with deep nullahs between them. It is on one of these 
spurs that the camp is pitched, about IJ miles from the border, 
on the right bank of the Kurmana Dara". From the bed of the 
stream to the flat top of the spur is a rise of between two and 
three hundred feet, parts of which are extremely steep. The 
flat top of the spur is about 300 yards across at the top and 
about 450 yards across at the bottom of the camp. Then comes 
one of the nullahs mentioned above, about 200 yards broad and, 
perhaps, 200 feet deep, with very steep banks. The south-east 
edge of camp corresponded with the edge of the bank of the 
Kurmana Dara ; on the north-west, the boundary of the upper half 
of the camp corresponded with the edge of the nullahs, it then 
receded, leaving a flat open space about 150 yards broad between 
it and the point where the steep bank begins. The north-east 
side of camp faced open nearly flat ground, and the south-west 
side the same. The whole ground on the flat top of the spur is 
more or less covered with dwarf palm and loose stones, both larc^e 
and small. Out of these a low wall, about two feet high, had 
been built up on the north-east side, facing the open, and on the 
south-east side along the edge of the bank of the Kurmana 
Dara. There were strong pickets out on the south-west in the 
open, and on the north-west on the edge of the big nullahs ; 



142 

these pickets had been stronglj fortified with thick stone 
walls. 

There were five small pickets out on the bank of the 
Surmana ; and small patrols went out contiuuallj round the 
camp, to prevent a surprise. One of the latter happened to 
be out at the very time the attack began. But the dark- 
ness so handicapped them, that although the enemy had 
collected within about 150 yards of them, thej could not 
see them, and the first intimation they got about the attack 
was hearing shots fired by our pickets as the enemy tried to 
rush them. The patrol then withdrew into camp, the enemy 
at the time being much nearer the camp than they were them- 
selves. On the previous night two pickets had been posted 
out in the open ground above camp ; but on the night of atack 
they had been withdrawn. This change somewhat disconcerted 
the enemy, who carefully stalked the low walls that had been 
built for the pickets. 

No doubt they thought they had caught the defenders 
asleep, and must have been sadly disappointed to find no 
one there, where they rushed in over the wall. This was 
all carried out in perfect silence, and the advance was con- 
tinued quietly, until our first pickets on the bank of the Kur- 
mana was reached. Here the sentry was the tribesmen — and 
only just in time ; a warning volley was fired, and the pickets 
retired, the enemy close on their heels, yelling and beating their 
drums, and keeping up a hot fire. The next pickets, about 100 
yards from the first one, was also closely pressed, but reached 
the camp wall in safety. Just as they settled down in their' 
places behind the wall, the havildar in command was shot dead 
as he was pointing out their places to his men. The first shot 
fired was apparently a signal for attack, for firing began 
almost immediately from a distance of about 200 yards on the 
north-east face, from the open. The tribesmen, under cover 
of the darkness, had built up rapidly small murchas of loose 
stones from behind which they could fire in comparative safety. 
Another party advanced down the big nullah on the north-west 
of camp; but they were at once seen, and retired almost 
immediately as soon as volleys were opened on them from the 
north-west pickets and two companies of the 5th Gurkhas, who 
were lining the edge of the nullah. 



143 

For the first few minutes it was hard to realise the 
nature of the attack ; from the noise of the drums and 
yells of the enemy, they seemed to be nearer than they, 
perhaps, really were ; perhaps the promptness with which 
our men turned out prevented them from rushing straight on 
into camp. As soon as the first slight confusion was over, 
the steadiness of the volley firing must have shown the enemy 
clearly enough that our men were quite ready for them. For 
some time they contented themselves with firing steadily into 
camp from behind their shelters, then came a pause ; they were 
creeping in nearer and heaping up the loose stones into 
fresh shelters, from which to re-commence their fire. These 
tactics were repeated from time to time, till about midnight 
they had closed in as near as they dared. Eound the east 
corner of camp, held by the 5th Punjab Infantry, they got up 
in individual cases to within 30 yards ; and there some of them 
died. 

By now large numbers of men had collected in a small 
nullah that joins the Kurmana just opposite the east corner 
of the camp. The yells and drumming increased, and they 
seemed about to make a rush ; the din going on just beyond 
the wall was a strange contrast to the dead silence on our side of 
it. broken only by the sharp words of command of the non-com- 
missioned officers, and the crack of section volleys. About 
1 A. M. the firing slackened. The leaders had been unable to 
get their men to attempt a rush. A great deal of choice abuse 
was exchanged among the enemy before they decided to retire,, 
and a great deal more was hurled at the camp. But bad words 
do not break any bones. Very few shots were fired after 1 
A. M., and soon all was still ; patrols were sent out, and found 
that the enemy had all departed. 

They had, however, fired steadily into camp for over 
two hours ; and had done a lot of damage. The 5th Punjab 
Infantry had one havildar killed ; a sepoy of the 15th 
Sikhs had been wounded; two sowars of the 18th Bengal 
Lancers were wounded ; two men of the 5th Gurkhas were 
wounded ; one follower was killed and several wounded ; 
about 20 animals (chargers and transport animals) were killed 
or wounded. Colonel Richardson had a narrow escape, his head 
being grazed by the fragments of a ricochet. It is surprising 
that the casualties were not greater, as the majority of the 



144 

enemy's bullets fell inside the camp. They were mostly round 
matchlock bullets, but there were a certain number of 
Martinis and Sniders being used. The strength of the enemy 
was estimated at 2,000. It is scarcely likely that a less number 
would have attacked the camp. Seven or eight of them were 
certainly killed or wounded outside the wall held by the 5th 
Punjab Infantry and blood stained litters which had been used 
to carry away the wounded were found on the field. There was 
a report in the village that 15 were killed and 41 wounded 
and that the Chief Malik of the Mussazais was among the 
killed. It was easy for the enemy to hit men and animals in 
camp, but very hard for the defenders to hit them crouching 
behind stones and ledges of rock. 




IN THE MOHMAND COUNTRY. 

CHAPTER XXXI. 

REVIEW OF THE SITUATION. 

HE quickly changing area of distance necessitated 
considerable alterations in the disposition of the 
British Field Forces. In Malakand the two Bri- 
gades were under Colonel Meiklejohn and General 
Jeffreys respectively, the Reserve Brigade under 
General J. Wodehouse, R.A., and the whole force commanded 
by Major-General Sir Bindon Blood. It was decided not 
to allow the tribes any breathing time, and quickly the first 
Brigade was located at Amandara and the second at Khar, 
whilst arrangements were made for the flying columns to 
operate. When the Shabkadar affair happened, a part of the 
force intended for the Reserve Brigade, which was then form- 
in^y at Mardan, was sent on instead to Peshawar. In the Swat 
Valley General Blood had first of all to wait a little while 
to allow freedom of action to the Political Officers to receive 
jirgalis, &c., after which a decision would be come to whether 
to move up the valley or not. Then came the formation of 



145 

two more Reserve Brigades at Rawalpiucli under General West- 
macott and General Yeatinan-Biggs — afterwards known as 
tlie Second and Third Reserve Brigades. On the 16th of August 
we heard that General Blood had started his march along 
the left bank of the Swat River into Upper Swat. At Mardan 
General Wodehouse's force had been raised to full strength 
by the addition of the Highland Light Infantry and the 2nd 
Queen's from Rawalpindi, and it was moved out to Rustani 
to watch the southern border of the Buner country. Then 
came the battle of Landakai, after which we found the centre 
of interest move to the Pesliawar Valley and Kohat. In view 
of the rumoured risings of the Afridis and Orakzais General 
Yeatman-Biggs was sent to Kohut to assunio command, Gene- 
ral Eiles beiug in command in the Peshawar District. The 
field of operations now stretched from Upper Swat to Waziris- 
tan, and the greatest military activity prevailed, troops being 
rapidly moved forward to the front and to fill up gaps caused 
by the formation of the two Reserve Brigades at Rawalpindi. 
In Upper Swat General Blood had a peaceful time. The alfair 
at Landakai bad had a very deraorali^ing effect upon the 
enemy, and from Rustam General Wodehouse reported that 
many of the Bunerwals had been seen carrying their dead and 
wounded over the passes leading from the Swat Valley — the 
melancholy tokens of a bloody fight. On the 20th, the con- 
centration of the troops told off to Kohat was almost complete 
and General Yeatman-Biggs was now in the position to be 
able to despatch a column to Thall in order to, in a manner, 
overawe the Orakzai and show them the futility of attempting 
the capture of Paracliinar Fort and securing possession of tlie 
Kurram Valley. It was decided that the political walk through 
the Swat Valley should stop at Mangloor, wliere the presence 
of Sir Bindon Blood and the troops v/ould be sufiicient to 
demonstrate clearly to tlie tribes the power of the Sirkar. 

Reports from the Khyber now gathered in volume and 
seriousness, and c[uickly we heard and realised that the whole 
of the famous highway between India and Afghanistan was in 
the hands of the Afridis, who had sacked the forts and killed some 
of the garrison. At this time General EUes was at Peshawar 
with a hastily collected force of 11,000 or 12,000 men of all arms. 
From that time until the present the Khyber has been closed to 
trafific and a state of anarchy has prevailed where, but a little 
while before, all was order and discipline. Great energy was 



146 

displayed on the Kohat side and every effort was made to avert 
the storm which all omens presaged. A flying column was sent 
out from Kohat to Thall under Colonel G. L. R. Richardson, 
18th Bengal Lancers, which halted at Hangu for orders. 
General Teatman-Biggs had a powerful force at Kohat at his 
disposal, including four Native Mountain Battery guns, a Garri- 
son Battery in Kohat Fort, six Squadrons of Native Cavalry, 
one and a half Battalion British Infantry, and one Company of 
Sappers, to which was added later the 3rd Bengal Cavalry and 
the 6th Madras Infantry. On the 25th came the first outbreak 
of hostilities in this direction, an attack being made on the 
Mahmudzai post, which is just below the Ublan Pass— a regular 
trade route. The position was defended by the Kurram Militia 
who, when they were attacked, retired and joined the detachment 
of Native Infantry close by. The next day General Yeatman- 
Biggs moved out from Kohat, and the Ublan Kotal, where the 
enemy was in force, was shelled and a good deal of damage done. 
The enemy showed no fight and our troops retired without loss, 
only one or two men being slightly wounded. Orders were 
now issued for the employment of the Malakand Field Force — 
■which had had a peaceful progress along the valley — to be used 
in operations against the Talash tribesmen beyond Chakdara, 
and the Utman Khels to the south-west of Malakand. Colonel 
Beid was ordered to take a small column to Uch, and General 
Jeffreys, after having his brigade strengthened by a Mountain 
Battery and a detachment of Cavalry, went to Tota Khan beyond 
Khar, and to march westwards from there reconnoitring the 
Inzari Pass about twelve miles away. If practicable he was 
to cross the Par>s and turn south over the Agra Pass and so 
drop into the Total Valley where he was expected to find at 
home some of the Utman Khels whose submission was neces- 
sary. That this expectation was shrewd was shown by later 
developments. Colonel Reid's column in the meantime was 
meant to be securing the submission of the tribes lying between 
Dir and tLe right bank of the Swat River. The brigade under 
General Wodehouse was still at Mardan where it was recon- 
stituted and stood in readiness to move wherever necessary. 
Then General Jeffreys' previous orders were countermanded, 
and he was instructed to stay at Khar, where, if necessary, he 
could move forward to Uch. 




147 



CHAPTER XXXII. 



THE MOHMAND FIELD FORCE. 

HE Governor- General in Council sanctioned the des- 
patch of a force as detailed below, to be styled the 
Mohmand Field Force, to move into the Mohmand 
country from Shabkadar and co-operate with a force 
under the command of Major-General Sir Bindon 
Blood, K.C.B. The force was composed as follows : — 

1st Brigade. 

1st Battalion (The Prince Alberts') Somersetshire Light Infantry. 
20th (Punjab) Regiment of Bengal Infantry. 
2nd Battalion, 1st Gurkha (Eifle) Regiment. 
Sections A and B, Xo. 5 British Field Hospital. 
No. 31 Native Field Hospital. 

2nd Brigade, 

2nd Battalion, The Oxfordshire Light Infantry. 

9th Gurkha (Rifle) Regiment of Bengal Infantry. 

37th (Dogra) Regiment of Bengal Infantry (6 companies). 

Sections C and D, No. 5 British Field Hospital. 

No. U Native Field Hospital. 

Divisional Troops. 

13th (The Duke of Connanght's) Regiment of Bengal Lancers. 

No. 3 ilountain Battery, Royal Artillery. 

No. 5 (Bombay) Mountain Battery. 

28th Regiment of Bombay Infantry. 

No. 5 Company, Bengal Sappers and Miners. 

let Patiala Infantry (Imperial Service Troops). 

Detachment, 16th Lancers, with a maxim gun. 

Detachment, Ist Battalion, The Devonshire Regiment,'with 2 ma:siin 
guns. 

Sections C and D, No. 63 and Section A, No. 45 Native Fi«ld Hos- 
pitale. 



148 



General Officer Commanding the Force 
{tvith the local ranh of Major- 
General). 

Aide-de-Camp 

Orderly Officer 

Eetra Orderly Officer 

Assistant Adjutant-General 



Assistant Quartermaster-General ... 
Deputy Assistant Quartermaster- 
General (Intelligence). 
Field rntelligence Officer 

Commanding Royal Artillery 

Adjidant, Royal Artillery 

Field Engineer 
Assistant Field Engineer 
Assistant Field Engineer 
Principal Medical Officer 
Superintendent, Army Signalling 

Provost Marshal ... ■ ... 
Field Treasure Chest-Officer 

Senior Veterinary Officer and Veter- 
inary Inspector. 
Chief Comynissariat Officer 

Assistant to Chief Commissariat 

Officer. 
Divisional Transport Offi.cer 

Assistant to Divisional Transport 
Officer. 

Ordnance Officer 

Siirvey 0§icer 

Section Command ant 



4. Commands and Staff. 

Brigadier-General E. R. Elles, C.B, 



Lieutenant M. B. Elles, R.E. 

Captain K. MacLaren, 13th Hussars. 

Captain E. E Grimaton, 6th Bengal 
Cavalty. 

Major C. L. Woollcombe, 2nd Batta- 
lion, King's Own Scottish Bor- 
derers. 

Major G. H. W. O'Sullivan, R.E. 

Captain F. A. Hoghton, 1st Bombay 
Grenadiers. 

Lieutenant C. E. Macquoid, 1st 
Lancers, Hyderabad Contingent. 

Lieutenant-Colonel A. E. Dathy, R, A. 

Captain W. MacLeod, R.A. 

Captain F. H. Kelly, R.E. 

Lieutenant W. A. Stokes, R.E. 

Lieutenant G. B. L. Greenstreet, R.E. 

Snrgeon-Colonel E. Townsend, A. M.S. 

Captain G. C. Rigby, Ist Battalion, 
Wiltshire Regiment. 

Major P. Massy, 19th Bengal Lancers. 

Lieutenant W. M. Grimley, 20th 
Punjab Infantry. 

•Veterinary Captain F. TV. Forsdyke, 
A.Y.D. 

Captain G. TVestropp, Assistant 
Commissary- General, 2nd Class. 

Captain G. R. C. Stuart, 1st Batta- 
lion, East Lancashire Regiment. 

Captain F. A. Rideout, Assistant 
Coramissary-General, 

Lieutenant W. M. C. Yandelenr, 2nd 

Battalion, Essex Regiment. 
Major T. E. Rowan, R.A. 
Brevet-Major W. J". Bythell, R. E. 

Captain W. C. Kuight, 4th Bengal 
Cavalry. 



149 

1st Brigade. 

Commanding , ... Brigadier- General R. VVestmacott, 

C.B., D.S.O. 

Orderly Officer Lieutenant R. C. Wellesley, R. H.A. 

Deputy Assistant Adjutant-General Captain W. P. Blood, Royal Irish 

Fusiliers. 

Deputy Asst. Quartermaster-General Captain F. J. M. Edwards, 3rd Bom- 
bay Cavalry. 

Brigade Commissariat Officer .,, Captain E. Y. Watson, D.A.C.G, 

Brigade Transport Officer Captain D. H. Armstrong, Ist Batta- 
lion, East Yorkshire Regiment. 

Regiment, Commissariat and TranS' Lieutenant N. G. Eraser, 4th Bom- 
port Officer. bay Cavalry. 

Asst. Superintendent, Army Signalling Lieutenant H. W. Field, the Devon- 

shire Regiment. 

Veterinary Officer Veterinary Lieutenant F. U. Carr, 

A.V.D. 

2nd Brigade. 

Commanding Colonel (with temporary rank of 

Brigadier-General) C. R» 3Iac- 

gregor, D.S.O. 
Orderly Officer 2ad Lieutenant E. W. C. Ridgeway, 

29th Punjab Infantry. 
Deputy Assistant Adjutant-General.,, Captain G. M. Gloster, Devonshire 

Regiment. 
Deputy Assistant Quartermaster- Captain II, Hudson, 19th Bengal 

General. Lancers. 

Brigade Commissariat Officer ... Lieutenant D. H. Drake-Brockman, 

D.A.C.G. 
Brigade Transport Officer ... ... Lieutenant R. G. N. Tytler, Gordon 

Highlanders. 
Regimental Commissariat and Lieutenant F. W. Birch, 29th Punjab 
Transport Officer. Infantry. 

Veterinary Officer Veterinary Lieutenant W. J. Tatara, 

A.V.D. 

The force ordered to proceed into the Mohmaud country 
consisted of General Westmacott's brigade and another com- 
manded by Colonel MacGregor, whilst General EUes was in 
command of the whole, taking the rank of Major-General. 
There was great and general satisfaction felt all over India 
when it was known that the Mohmand country was to be 



160 

traversed by our troops. It was felt that the admirable 
arrangements by which forces would swoop down upon the 
Mohmand country from opposite directions at one and the 
same time would also ensure the business being speedily and 
successfully concluded. Major-General Blood, with two bri- 
gades of the Malakand Field Force under Brigadier-General 
Jeffreys and Brigadier-General Wodehouse was to act from the 
east while the first Brigade under Colonel Meiklejohn, held 
their line of communications and Major-General Elles with 
the brigades under Brigadier-General Westmacott and Colonel 
MacGregor was to move direct into the Mohmand country from 
the Shabkadar side. 

It is now important that attention should be given to what 
was going on with the Malakand Field Force, in order to 
understand what followed whilst the campaign in the Mohmand 
country was in progress. 

On September 8th the first movement of the column from 
the Malakand Field Force was made from the Pankjora Valley. 
General Woodhouse's brigade arrived at Sadda on the 5th where 
the bridge was found all right having been guarded by the Dir 
levies. 



CHAPTER XXXIII. 



THB IMAGINARY BATTLE OF PANJKORA. 

URING the passage of the Panjkora River on Sep- 
tember 4th, the seizing of the bridge-head was not 
accomplished without an engagement, imaginary it 
is true, but still sufficiently real to those in whose 
imagination it existed, to give them some very 
genuine excitement for a short time. 




151 

The road for the latter balf of the clay's march had been 
almost impassable for wheeled traffic, and it was only with th© 
greatest difficulty that the ambulance carts had been got along 
at all. As it was, the bullocks had to be unyoked and th© 
carts dragged along by hand, and it was only owing to the 
opportune presence of a certain number of sick men in them 
that they were got forward. Under the able direction ol 
the medical officers, however, the energies of the sick were 
equal to the task, and the carts surmounted the obstacles 
of the road right bravely. When about a mile from the 
bridge a halt was called for the administration of medical 
comforts, and the medical officer in charge of the carts went 
forward to explore the remaining portion of the road, which 
he found to his dismay, presented difficulties of an even more 
formidable nature than those already accounted for. Under 
these circumstances, fearing that the sick might become over- 
tired and, perhaps, even seriously unwell if they had to drag 
the carts much longer, he asked for instructions as to advancing 
any further. He received orders for the carts to come forward 
if possible, and was on the way back to resume command of 
his fatigue party of invalids, when he noticed on the crest of ^ 
the hills, on the far side of the river, a contingent of the Dir \^ 
levies engaged in building sanjars for the use of our pickets. ^; 
These he very naturally mistook for the foe, and word went 
back that the hills were swarming with enemies, and that the 
ambulance carts were to proceed if possible. From this to a 
general engagement, with urgent orders for the carts to ad- 
vance at all hazards to carry off the dead and wounded, was 
but a short step. 

The effect of the news on the previously dispirited sick 
was electrical. The lame men rushed between the shafts of 
the ambulance carts, the maimed shoved the wheels round 
Tvith feverish activity, and the pneumonia patients encouraged 
both with their shouts. Suddenly, however, a sufferer from 
ophthalmia, who happened to be on ahead, detected the 38th 
Dogras fraternising with the supposed enemy, and sent a man 
with heat apoplexy back with the news. Sadly and sorrowfully 
the sick men abandoned their dreams of bloodshed, and re- 
turned to the more prosaic, if less heroic, task of getting the 
wheeled transport through, a feat which was achieved by 8 p.m. 
without further interruption. 



152 

The 2ncl Brigade having marcbed into camp at Serai on 
the 6th, General Blood with his staff proceeded there the fol- 
lowing day. Orders were now out for the two Brigades of the 
Malakand Field Force to advance beyond the Panjkora and 
effe3t a junction in tho Mohmand country with a force under 
General Elles moving in from Shabkadar, the general line of 
advance being towards Nawagai and then south into the Moh- 
mand country. The 2ud Brigade on the 8th crossed Panj- 
kora, and on the 9th the 3rd Brigade followed with the camels. 
The 1st Brigade on reaching Panjkora later took over the 
tents of the 3rd Brigade and held the lines of communication 
back to Chakdara. On the 9th the 2ud Brigade arrived at 
Camp Goshara. On the evening of the lltU Sir Bindon Blood, 
accompanied by the Divisional Staff, proceeded to Chakrata 
and joined tke 3rd Brigade there. The Khan of Nawagai 
visited tho camp and tendered his best services. On the 12th 
the Divisional Head-quarters Staff and 3rd Brigade left 
Chakrata for camp at Sbam Sbak where they were joined by 
the 8th Bengal Mountain Battery and two Battalions of In- 
fantry from the 2nd Brigade. On the 14th the march to 
Nawagai had been completed and General Blood and his Head- 
quarter Staff were in camp there 

The 2ud Brigade of General Blood's division under General 
Jeffreys reached Sado after having completed effectually the work 
it set out to do among the tribes beyond the Uch River, At Sado 
General Blood assumed command of the division, which now 
consisted of about 5,000 men, whilst at this time, the force of 
General Elles with which it was co-operating was of similar 
strength. No proclamation was made to the Mohmand tribes, 
but news of the expedition spread far and wide, and our political 
officers made known to all that the armed visit to their country 
of the forces of the SirJiai' was not to menace the independence 
of any tribe but to take such steps as would ensure the border 
against being attacked in the future. General Blood with the 
two brigades advanced due west by the Ushira Valley to 
Maudia, the road it will be remembered which was followed by 
Sir Robert Low in the Chitral Campaign. From Mandia the 
road leads south-west by the Khaluzi Valley to the high range 
which separates Bajour proper from the Mohmand country. 

When at Nawagai our troops were in the rear of the Moh- 
mands and could choose any point on which to march. The 



153 

Gandab Valley or defile along which General Elles was to advance 
is thirty miles from Nawagai, and about fifty from Shabkadar, 
and along this route he advanced after a slight delay of a 
couple of days caused by the desire of Major Deane to secure 
the complete submission of the Utman Khels before returning 
to Swat. 

General Wodehouse when he reached Nawagai spent a 
couple of days in surveying the Mittai Valley, after which 
the Brigade swung round on the 16th, and marched due south 
via Lokarai and Songab upon Takhdand, where it was to join 
hands with General Jeffreys' Brigade, which had entered the 
Mohmand country by the road east of Nawagai which led it 
direct upon Takhdand. 

Meanwhile the 3rd Brigade, with Sir Bindon Blood, were 
occupying a position of great strategic importance. A glance 
at the mad will show that on the morning of the 15th the 
situation was extremely difficult, and might at any moment 
have become critical. General Elles was still at Shabkadar. 
The Hadda Mullah with a large gathering occupied a strong posi- 
tion in the Bedmani Pass. The Mamund Valley— Salarzai and 
Bajour — were either In a blaze of at the combustion point. 
Between these two powerful revolts lay Nawagai. The Khan, 
a man of great influence in these parts, might by throwing his 
influence against the British have raised such a storm as would 
have given occupation to every soldier in the mobilised forces. 
The Pass of Nawagai would have been closed. General Elles 
arriving with his Brigade from Shabkadar would have had to 
defend himself, perhaps indeed to fall back withe ut attacking 
the Mohmands at all. It is easy to realise how serious the effect 
of such a disaster would have been. 

It was necessary to be bold. Sir Bindon Blood decided to 
remain at Nawagai to keep the Khan loyal and the Pass clear 
at all costs. This action cut the tribesmen into two sections. 
It paralysed the Khan. It maintained the communications. 
But it was not unattended with danger and difficulty. Sir 
Bindon Blood considered himself strong enough to hold hii 
position in spite of any attack that might be made . He judged 
rightly. On the 18th a skirmish took place. The Hadda 
Mullah was feeling his way. On the 19th a sharp attack was 
delivered on the entrenched camp, and on the niglit of the 20th 



15i 

a grand assault was made bj 4,000 tribesmen. This attack is 
considered by many of those long practised in frontier warfare 
to have been the best conceived and most vigorously executed 
attack which the tribesmen have hitherto delivered. It was 
repulsed with crushing losses. To us the cost was two officers 
(including another Brigadier), 35 men, and 120 animals killed 
\| and wounded. 

This important action must be referred to in detail. 



CHAPTER XXXIV. 




NIGHT ATTACK ON GENERAL SIR BINDON BLOOD. 

N September 20th, a reconnaissance in force was sent 
out by Major-General Sir Bindon Blood in the 
direction of the Badmanai Pass, where gatherings 
of the enemy with standards had been several times 
observed, and where cavalry reconnaissances had 
been twice fired on. This reconnaissance in force start- 
ed about 3 p. M. from the Nawagai camp, under the com- 
mand of Brigadier-General Wodehouse, but was unable to come 
to close quarters with the enemy owing to the necessity of 
getting back to camp befora dark. On the appearance of our 
force, the enemy in large numbers swarmed out of a big village 
in the mouth of the Mitai Valley ; they had many standards, and 
were estimated by our advanced cavalry as about 1,500 strong, 
about one-third being thrown out as skirmishers, with the 
remainder in a compact mass as reserve. Our force advanced 
to the edge of a large nullah about 6,000 yards distant from the 
enemy, and as it was then growing late. General Blood ordered a 
retirement, first, however, firing six rounds from the guns in the 
direction of the enemy, without apparently producing any effect 
at the very long range. 

Brigadier-General Wodehouse then retired the force in 
echelon, the enemy following at a respectful distance, being 



155 

about two or three miles behind when our men arrived in camp 
about dark. Before the light failed they could be distinguished 
moving down into a big nullah to the south of the camp, and 
nine standards could be counted in one place. In anticipation 
of an attack, bonfires were placed in readiness on the tlireatened 
faces of the camp, viz. to the south and west. The Khan of 
Nawagai, wlio had been supplying a picket on the west of 
the camp, reported that an attack in force was to be expected, 
and that his picket would not be able to hold its own : so he 
was instructed to order his men to raise an alarm on the enemy's 
presence becoming known, and then to retire at once. The 
alarm, however, came from the south face of the camp, where 
the Queen's and the Garwhal Rifles were stationed and was 
occasioned by the lighting of the bonfires at about 8-45 p.m., 
their lighting being the signal for the first volley. 

Up to this time not a sound had been heard, the enemy hav- 
ing evidently crept quietly up the bed of the big nnllah leading 
up to the south and west faces cf the camp. It is supposed that 
it was their intention to attempt to carry the camp by a rush, but 
that the unexpected lighting of the bonfires made them think 
their presence was discovered, or perhaps, the men employed in 
lighting them offered a too tempting mark to some of the younger 
bloods. Be this as it may, the lighting of the fires probably 
saved our men the unpleasant experience of a sword attack in the 
darkness, and throughout the night the actual attacking was all 
done with firearms, though several times the enemy attempted 
to come to close quarters, covering the advance by a heavy fire : 
but the fire of the defenders was too steady and effective to allow 
of an actual charge. The camp was in the form of an oblong, 
the shorter sides facing north and south. The south face was 
manned by the Queen's, who also had part of the west face, 
and the Garwhal Rifles, who also had part of the east. The 
Bombay Sa]>pers and Miners were on the east face, on the left of 
the Garwhals, and the 11th Bengal Lancers on their left again. 
The north-east corner was held by the 22nd Punjab Infantry, 
who also had the north face and part of the west face, in the 
centre of the latter face was No. 1 Mountain Battery, Royal 
Artillery, on whose left were the Queen's. 

The brunt of th'e attack fell on the south and west faces, 
and thus the right of the Garwhal RifleH, the Queen's, the guns 
and the left of the 22ud Punjab Infantry were the units most 



156 

occupied. The Queen's had the chief advantage of the light 
from the bonfires, and the effect of several of their voUeya 
was very marked, as the enemy advanced at first with the utmost 
boldness, approaching within 15 yards of the outer line of the 
camp. This was also the case on the west face, but the steady 
firing of the 22nd Punjab Infantry and a few rounds of case 
from tlie guns soon drove the enemy back into the shelter of the 
7iullahs and terraces near. The camp was so placed a« to prevent 
much firing into it from above, though some of the enemy's 
marksmen took advantage of the trees on the west side to keep 
up a galling fire upon any mark they could find. The -tents of 
the Divisional and Brigade Staff and of the hospital drew the fire 
especially, and these, with the exception of those of the hospital 
tents which it was actually necessary to keep standing, were 
dropped. 

A man with a Lee-Metford specially turned his attention to 
General Blood's tent, but the horses of the Brigade Staff, which 
were directly behind in the line of fire, were the chief sufferers 
from his efforts, no less than five out of ten horses belonging to 
the Staff being hit. The number of breech-loading rifles in use 
by the enemy was quite remarkable ; there seemed to be many 
Martinis and Sniders, and about half-a-dozen Lee-Metford's. 
The bombardment of the camp was kept up till about 2-15 a. m., 
and during the whole of the five-and-a-half hours it lasted the 
rain of bullets into and over the camp was incessant. The 
small shelter trenches round the perimeter of the camp protect- 
ed those actually in them from the greater part of the enemy's 
fire, which was mostly delivered from the nullahs and terraces 
round the camp, and this accounts for the small number of 
casualties, one man (of the Queen's) being killed, and 28 
wounded, one of whom, a follower, died the next day. 

The casualties among the animals were officially reported 
as 44 killed and 89 wounded. 

The reserves had to lie out in the open in the centre of the 
camp without any protection, and to any one lying there, as 
every minute a bullet could be heard to find its billet in a kit, 
tent or horse, it seemed little short of a miracle that the men got 
off so lightly. Veterinary-Captain Mann was slightly wounded, 
in this part of the camp, but it was a lucky escape that he had, 
as the bullet that struck him hit his pistol, and he escaped with 
a bad bruise. 



157 

About 11 o'clock, wheu the firiug was at its height, 
Brigadier-General Wodehonse went across to the Divisional 
Staff camp to 'speak to General Blood, and it was on his 
return that a ricochet bullet caught him in the calf of the left 
leg, inflicting a severe wound, but luckily missing both bone 
and artery. He was taken to the hospital tents, which were, 
however, anything but a haven of refuge, as, some of the 
enemy's marksman paid particular attention to them, offering 
as they did an excellent target especially when a light had to be 
lit for the examination of a wounded man. One of these tents 
had 13 bullet-holes through it, while that of Colonel Collins, 
Commanding the Queen's, was a good second with 11 ; indeed, 
hardly any one could boast an uninjured kit in the morning. 

The firing began to slacken as the moon rose, and at about 
2-15 A.M., when she appeared above the hills to the north-east, 
the enemy drew off. They left five dead men close to the camp, 
including one whom the 22nd fetched out ot a tree opposite 
their lines in the early morning, a party having gone out of the 
camp with the express intention of bagging him; and upwards 
of 20 were found later, hastily buried round the camp. 

The total losses were at first put at over 100, but later 
information makes them out to have been much heavier, 
trustworthy evidence putting them at between 300 and 350 in 
killed alone. It was stated locally that the entire gathering 
of the Hadda Mullah, numbering about 1,500, and of the Sufi 
Mullah, numbering about 2,000, with some Shinwaris and a 
contingent from Afghan territory took part in tlie att.njk, and 
that all lost heavily, the latter having 20 killed. It was further 
asserted that the enemy were so confident of capturing the 
camp that they had provided a quantity of baggage animals 
to carry off the loot. A tom-tom appears to have accompanied 
the guard over this baggage, for it could be heard being 
yigorously beaten in the 7itdlah some way away from camp ; 
while a voice could also be occasionally distinguished exhort- 
ing the attackers to "shout altogether and charge," though with- 
out effect, as the enemy obviously found the Dum-Dum and 
Martini bullets difficult to face at close quarters. The effect 
of the repulse of the attack was the rapid dismemberment 
of the entire gathering, which was reported to have dispersed 
entirely by the 22nd ; and the subsequent lack of opposition 
on the Badmanai Pass was directly traceable to the same cause. 




168 
CHAPTER XXKV. 

THE CAPTURE OF BA.DMANAI PASS. 

HE advance from Sbabkadar commenced on the 15th. 
The 1st Brigade led the way at 5-30 a.m. with 
only their obligatory mules carrying ammunition, 
water, &c., and were shortly followed by a por- 
tion of the 2nd Brigade escorting about 1,300 
camels loaded with kits and stores. Owing, however, to the 
Hadda Mullah being reported to be in force about eight 
miles from Shabkadar, the hills on either side of the path 
had to be crowned by the flankers of the 20th Punjab Infantry, 
who were acting as advance guard, and the advance was neces- 
sarily very slow. After proceeding about 7 miles to a village 
called Daud, the road was found to lead up a precipitous defile 
hardly passable for mules and g^uite impracticable for camels. 
This path was simply a track across slippery sheet rock, over 
which the mules mounted to the top by a series of jumps and 
acrobatic feats. This defile was the place where the Hadda 
Mullah was expected to offer resistance, and numerous sangars 
had been built commanding bends in the road. Whether, how- 
ever, his heart failed him or whether the news of General 
Blood's advance from the north had induced him to retire, is 
not obvious, but there is no doubt that if he had held the defile 
as he evidently first intended to do, he would not have been 
ejected without considerable loss on both sides. 

The Pioneers and Sappers and Miners worked at the first 
defile and succeeded in ijnproving it almost into a bicycle track. 
At Gandab there is a plentiful supply of water from the bed of 
the river, but shortly above. the village the stream quite fails 
and water is only procurable from wells. Immediately along 
the banks of the stream there is a narrow strip of cultivation, 
chiefly cheri, but evidently in the spring the greater part of the 
country is under crops, and considerable stores of barley, wheat 
and bhoasa were found in all the villages. Fowls and onions 
were also more or less plentiful. 

The first phase' of the operations included reconaissances 
being pushed forward iu all directions to the Kapak and over 



159 

the Nahaki Pusses, the latter bj General Weatmacott's column. 
Beyond this latter again, up to Kung, towards Nawagai, and 
towards Danish Kol ; and entrenched camps along the line of 
communication were arranged. The next great stride forward 
was made when General Elles moved up to Nahaki and what 
may be called the second phase of the operations was entered 
upon. Brigadier-General MacGregor remained at Nahaki to 
defeat any possible turning movement of the enemy, while 
Generals Elles and Westmacott pushed on to unite with Sir 
Bindon Blood's force, and to get in contact with the enemy. 

Meanwhile the Oxfordshire had joined the 1st Brigade. | 
The Somersetshire, who had rather gone to pieces during the j 
course of the campaign, returned later to Peshawar and Cherat. 
Information was received that the Hadda Mullah with a large 
following was encamped at Kuz Chinarai, some 15 miles beyond 
Nahaki, and was waiting to be attacked. 

General Elles and the two Brigades encamped at the foot \ 
of the Badmanai Pass, where on the night of the 24th all was \ 
ready for the attack on the Badmanai Pass the following \ 
morning. The troops were in good spirits at the prospect 
of at last having a real set to with the Hadda Mullah and his 
fanatical followers and it was evident that the enemy meant 
business, for 'lights out' had barely sounded, when a dozen 
bonfires showed out on the surrounding hill sides and " sniping" 
began. Colonel Graves' Brigade turned out as some of the 
enemy came daringly close to their lines; but General Weat- 
macott's made no return and at about 12-30 firing subsided. 

The two Brigades fell in in the morning at 7 to advance to the 
taking of the Pass which was reported to be held in strength. 
At the entrance of it stands a village and a low conical hill the 
position from which the cavalry reconnaissance was fired on 
Behind this village is the first kotal which commands the mouth 
of the Pass. General Westmacott was entrusted with the turn- 
ing of this left position and the brunt of the day fell upon his 
force. 

The two Brigades advanced simultaneously and the three 
Batteries were massed in tbe centre under Lieutenant-Colonel 
Duthy. The 20th Punjab Infantry furnished General Weatma- 
cott's advanced guard, the 1st Gurkhas in'support followed by 
the Bombay Pioneers, the Somersets being told off as an escort 



160 

to the guns, except oue company which was detached to occupy 
a spur on the right surmounted by a tower. The 20th slanted 
up the incline fields to the village, which they found unoccupied. 
The actual ascent of the kotal then commenced. The whole of 
the hillside was covered with small holly bushes and it was not 
until the advanced skirmishers of the 20th were half way up 
the hill, that it was certain that the position was occupied by 
the enemy. Then at 10 o'clock a shot was fired and a brisk 
fire broke out from the summit of the hill. The 20th dodging 
from bush to bush, boulder to boulder, steadily advanced, barely 
firing a shot and the enemy seeing the glint of cold steel, fell 
back to a corresponding spur behind -a few edging to tb.e left, 
but the fire of Lieutenant Logan's Maiim quickly dislodged 
these and they joined the main body on the surmounting spur. 
By 8-20 the top of the first kotal was won, and it is interesting 
to note that the 20th turned the position without the aid of 
artillery fire. 

A brief halt on the summit allowed the supporting regi- 
ment to come up and Colonel Cunningham's Mountain Battery. 
The 20th then advanced to clear the second spur, the Gurkha 
coming into action behind them, as the enemy took up a posi- 
tion on the high crest of a hill which commanded the whole line 
of advance. The Battery came into action here and a few rounds 
were sufficient to expel them. 

The action then became general as the enemy split up into 
small parties, covered each succeeding spur, and contested the 
advance of each skirmishing party until they were up almost to 
within rushing range. They had several picked marksmen 
amongst them, and at one period they had singled out Generals 
Westmacott and Staff, who were always present in Ihe fighting 
line. The main attack pressed in up to 2,000 feet above the 
valley, while a detachment of the Afridi Company of the 20th 
with the Maxims worked along the spars on the right and had 
a close quarter engagement with a party of tribesmen sangered 
in a ziarat. 

But as the Pathans (our soldiers) m.ade their final rush the 
enemy forsook their stronghold, and were hurled down into the 
valley close to Badmanai village, the Maxim playing over them 
as they made their way down the ravines leading to the far side 
of the valley. In the meantime the Gurkhas and remainder 



161 

of the 20tlj liacl worked up to the highest ridges aud had driven 
a'll the enemy before them. 

The advanced guard of the other Brigade then began to 
work up the riglit of the valley and Lieutenant Logan seeinc a 
collection in a village on their front turned his Maxim upon 
them, and they dispersed before the 22nd Punjab Infantry came 
within range. Thus by twelve minutes to one the left approach 
of the Pass wiis turned and the road to Badmauai clear, the 
total casualties being two killed and three wounded in the 20tli 
and Gurkhas. The brunt of the fighting fell upon the 20th 
and the Maxims, who with the Gurkhas did excellent work. 

General Elles holioed his congratulations up to General 
Westmacott at the close of the action, saying that the 20th and 
Maxims behaved beautifully and could not have done better. 

That night the Brigade encamped at Badmanai village. From 
Badmanai the force moved doivn to Torakhwa and on the fol- 
lowing morning marched out of the fort there to the punish- 
ment of the Jarobi Valley, the key of most of the trouble which 
had taken place in this quarter of the frontier. General West- 
macott marched his column out with the Somerset Light Infan- 
try ns the advanced guard, the Gurkhas following, then the two 
niounlaiu batteries with, the Bombay Pioneers as escort, while 
the 20th Punjab Infantry fni-nished the rearguard, General Elles 
and Staif, including the Mahaiaja of Patiala- accompanying the 
advanced guard. A short pass had to be crossed before the 
opening to the Jarobi plain was reached ; but it brought no diffi- 
culties. There followed a march of five miles over as desolate 
and arid a country as one could ever imagine. Tier upon tier of 
dusty waste-stretches, the force winding its weary way along the 
shingled and bouldered nullahs and waterways which serve this 
casual people for roadways. It seemed that jarobi, the valley of 
the Mohmauds, which overflows with milk and honey, was but a 
myth, for it appeared that the barren waste between it and Tor- 
akhwa ecded in a solid range of hills. But the Patiala Cavalry, 
which were furnishing the advanced scouts, came back and report- 
ed a gorge, and this was the promised land. A reconnaissance up 
this gorge made by Captain Houghten and Lieutenant Maclarea 
was fired on by the enemy on the heights on either side to the 
number of two or three hundred, and on the return parties could 
be seen by the advanced guard. Two guns of No. 3 Battery- 
were called up to disperse "these, and a'^couple of ringed sliefl 



162 

i\-itb a volley from tbe compaDv of tbe Somersets was sufficient 
to do this. But it was at once apparent that the valley was a 
most difficult one to approach from a military point of view. 

It was narrow and winding and s\irraounted with precipi- 
tous hills, which were so high that it would have been heavy 
work turning them if they had been occupied. But though 
the tribesmen could be seen collecting on ihe summits they 
made no attempt to arrest tbe advance of the troops up the 
valley. Captain Kelly at once set to work, and J3ames showed 
on either side that Shabkadar was being avenged. At the first 
gorge General Westmacott left the Somersets with No. 5 Moun- 
tain Battery, and a half battalion of the Gurkhas was sent up a 
spur which commanded the left approach up the valley while a 
company of the 20th were detached to take a similar position 
on the right. The force then advanced, and a square tower 
standing prominently in the centre of the waterway showed 
where the valley opened out to the right into the Jarobi Valley 
proper. 



CHAPTER XXXYI. 



A MOHMAND PARADISE : THE HOME OF HADDA MULLAH. 




^ITE main advance toiled up the bouldered way, and 
then, when the tower was reached at last, the beauti- 
ful valley which no European had gazed upon before 
broke upon the view. After the country traversed 
through for the previous ten days it certainly was a 
picturesque spot. The valley opened out and the far side was 
lost in a lofty range. On the right the hills were lower and 
gracefully wooded with walnut and pine, while as stepping- 
stones to the centre of the valley the green fields of Indiau 
corn rose in succeeding tiers, and there on a knoll with a deep 
grove at its foot stood Jarobi proper, — the home of the Mad 
Mullah — nestling against the wooded spurs which rose away 
from behind it melting away into the bleak barrenness of the 
separating range. It was a veritable rat-trap and photographs 



163 

or sketclies made of it, and its approaches would be most in- 
teresting mementos. Of course the different heiglits of the 
approach were crowned. One incident shows the amount of 
fanaticism in some of these tribesmen. Five swordsmen who 
remained behind in a maajid either intentionally to do a ghaza, 
or had stayed there too long when their comrades cleared on, 
rushed on the 20th Punjab Infantry and died, undoubtedly in 
their own way, as a sacrifice. 

As the fir.st white men shaded their eyes to the scene, the 
elements joined, and as if in disapprobation of the sacriligious 
advance, dense storm clouds rolled oyer the peaks and vivid 
lighting played above the sacred spot, while the artillery of 
heaven reverberated across the peaceful valley ; an ominous 
forecast of the rude awakening which was about to come. And 
even as the force halted in the entrance the flames of destiuc- 
tion began to lick upwards in the posts which held the gorge, 
and the commanding tower stood a moment and then melted 
away in a cloud of dust and smoke as the destroying cartridge 
took effect. 

AJter a temporary halt two companies of the 20th and the 
Sappers were sent forward to burn Jarobi. As th»^v came 
abreast of the village the heavy clouds brought np laiu and 
hail, and a bitter wind chilled all to the bone as tliey plodded 
up the Pass. Colonel Woon was in command of his two com- 
panies, and beyond the knoll he found the road which was said 
to lead to the Mullah's retreat narrowed into a narrow defile 
with almost sheer cliffs on either side. The Sappers had 
applied the fatal torch to Jarobi, and Colonel Woon was still 
pressing up the defile, and yetthere was no hostile demonstration. 
Then suddenly, when the roadway became still narrower, a blaze 
of fire was poured in from either'side, and it was evident that 
the defile was held by the enemy in force. 

There was no cover for the 20th and Sappers, and as they 
stood they returned the fire and then pushed on to the finai 
goal. The fire was heavy, and four or five men dropped in as 
many seconds. In the meantime, the firing having declared the 
position to General Westmacott in the rear, No.° 3 Mountain 
Battery was ordered up, and it made beautiful practice on the 
hill i crowning the left of the 20th, while the remaining half 
battalion was pushed up to the defile in support. A few minutes 
after the guns came into action the whole of thie yallej was in 



164 

flames, auJ the main object of the expedition bad been attained. 
As a retirement in the dark would not have been desirable, at 
3-30 the " retire" was sounded, and the two companies of the 
20th passed through the Gurkhas on the way down to the camp, 
and in turn the Gurkhas passed through the Pioneers. Parties 
of the enemy, seeing that the force was retiring, gathered on 
the hillsides, and as the Bombay Pioneers covered the with- 
drawal from the valley by half battalion volleys they came under 
a harassing fire from the most daring of the cragsmen who held 
on to their rear. General Westmacott personally conducted 
the covering of the retiring column, and most of the casualties 
occurred within a few feet of him ; so it is probable that the 
Iribes' marksmen had singled out his flag. 

By 5 the dangerous part of a most treacherous valley had 
l)€en cleared and by 5-30 the whole of the troops engaged were 
-jn camp. It will be seen that the tribesmen again practised 
their usual tactics. They showed no hostility until the advance 
guard was well into what might well have been a cul de sac, and 
then when darkness compelled the General to withdraw his 
troops rushed to the attack in strengtl), hoping to delay the force 
until it should become entangled in the ravines and cuttin<Ts 
of the Pass. ®' 

On the 20th the Brigade moved a little further down the 
Talley scouring all the villages within reach. On the 27th nn 
s^ttack was made on Khuda Khel, a village whose /irgahs 
T?ould not listen to the surrender of their breech-loaders It 
first they occupied their village, when shelled out of that they 
took to the hills. It might be described as a verv pretty field 
day against a skeleton enemy. The 28th Pioneers in the 
centre, the Gurkhas on the right, the Oxfordshire Li^^bt 
Infantry on the left. As our force advanced the enemv retir^^d 
and It was a game of long bowls, shells, and long 'distance 
Tolleys. The enemy fired excellent volleys, got under cover the 
moment they saw the smoke of the guns, and jumped up and 
fired again directly the shell had burst. They must have had 
pits or something of the sort. One cannot help admiriuc^ these 
men a small force about one to ten defying our troops and 
Tvilling to take any punishment we may be able to administer 
rather than surrender their breech-loaders. It is difficult to 
gee how this last could be enforced unless we were prepared to 
stay in the country some months. 



165 

Witb the capture of Badmanai Pass, the assault ou Jarobi 
and ou Kbuda Kbel, tbe figbtiug stage of tbe operations may be [ 
said to bave been brougbt to a close on tbe 28tb September. 

Tbero only remained wbat may be called tbe pbase of " Poli* 
tioal walk-round." Compared witb the latter days of tbe figbtiug 
stage bad been tbe infliction of puuisbment. The Musa Kbels 
took tbeirs, and tbe Baizais theirs, and tbe villagers of tbe 
Kung Kbwaizai's theirs. Tbe " show " miglit bave been called 
over, and tbe Somersets and Patiala Cavalry were returned to 
Peshawar. Tbe brigades of the other force under Officiating 
Brigadier-General Graves quietly worked tbeir way down. 
But the whole movement was so leisurely that it hardly 
attracted any attention. Generals Elles and MacGregor took a 
column out to Yakdand, and Dauisb Kot, and hurried up tribes 
who still owed money, arms, grain and forage. They took 
prisoners as hostages from any whose payments were not quite 
complete, reconnoitred new passes and routes, and started off— 
Lieutenant-Colonel Woodhouse witb a column down tbe Pandi- 
ali Ali Kaudi route. On the 2ud October the final details for 
return of the various units of the force to Peshawar were issued, 
and on the 7tb October the curtain was finally rung down. 

There is a good story told that, during tbe attack on tbe 
Badmanai Pass, the Hadda Mullab was seen personally riding 
among tbe flying foe, but bis pony fell in an awkward place, 
and they put him into a litter and carried him off. There were , 
women close by. refugees from tbe villages, who cursed him in. |i 
their choicest tongue for tbe troubles be had brougbt upon them. |\ 

As far as the Baizais are concerned, they never can boast " 
that their purdah has not been lifted, that a Sircars force has not 
swf-pt through their country, and in accordance witli the nature 
ot things, it may be fairly presumed that they will keep clear of 
raids in our territory for many a long day. At the same time, 
in the matter of surrender of tbeir breech-loaders the tribesmen 
were adamant, and would not throw up th^r sponge. Their J irgahs^ 
were willing to accept any terms except that, and they stood 
their ground. The Mohmand Field Force hud unt the good 
fortune to come in contact witb large masses of them. They 
had shown a front and then retired, and retired till our force 
could go no further. 




166 



GENERAL JEFFREYS AND THE MAMUNDS 

CHAPTER XXXVII. 

HOT FIGHTING : HEAVY BRITISH LOSSES. 

return to the Malakaod Brigades we find that much 
has occurred to alter the original plans by which 
Genera's Blood and KUes were to fall simultaneously 
on the enemy and overwhelm him. On the night 
before the Shabkadar advance, General Jeffreys' 
was fired into for six hours by the Mamuuds, and heavy 
losses resulted to our officers and men. On the 13th General 
Jeffreys ahd the 3rd Brigade moved up beyond Khar. On 
the loth, the Political Officer with two squadrons of the 
11th Bengal Lancers moved up the Mamuod Valley, and 
with the assistance of the Khan of Jhar an attempt was 
made to get the jirgah to come in, but this proving un- 
successful, an advance was made up the valley, and some sheds 
were burnt in a village known to be implicated in the attack 
on Chakdara. and in wiiich there was a horse that had been 
stolen from the cavalry. On the 14th, a squadron of the lltli 
Bengal Lancers reconnoitred the Salarzai Valley, and one of 
the passes north. An armed picket was posted on the hill, 
and in some places armed men were seen about, but generally 
the people seemed quiet. They expressed a fear that at any 
time some tribes might come down and attack our camp and so 
implicate them. That day the 2nd Brigade camp had been 
moved some miles nearer the Rambat Pass ; the Buffs and 
Sappers had been moved up to hold the Pass ; and preparations 
had been made to cross in the morning. 

There was no suspicion of any contemplated attack on the 
camp.. About 8 p.m., however, some shots were fired into camp, 
and everyone was on the alert at once. The Guides occupied 
the east face of camp, the Sikhs the south, and the Dogras 
with the cavalry and guns the north face. The first attack was 
made against the Guides and continued for about two-aud-a-ha!l; 
hours, the leaders every now and then making every effort 
to briuw their men on to the charge. Abotit 100 yards from 



1G7 

the east face there was a deep nullaJi, and the ground ou 
the far side commanded the camp. The enemy, it is believed, 
Lad carefully reconnoitred the camp by daylight, and located 
the head-quarter camp, as all night a steady fire was kept 
up on this from the points of vantage east of the nullah, 
and had the officers whose tents were in that locality not been 
employed elsewhere they would have fared badly. Several 
shots were put into some grain bags which were put up to 
shelter the General. 

After about two-and-a-half hours firing from the east face, 
the enemy moved off, evidently to hold a council of war. They 
then came on against the Dogras, their leaders again trying to 
bring them on to the charge and imploring them to shoot lower. 
A bugler also tried to sound, but only succeeded in making weird 
noises. There \<7as a large peroeutageofrifl.es used against our men, 
and the shooting was very close as will be seen from the number 
of animals killed and wounded, about 35 being killed and sisty 
wounded. The 38th Dogras had exceedingly bad luck, losing 
three officers. Permission bad been granted to Lieutenant \Y. E. 
Tomkins to make a sortie, and orders had been passed down 
the line to cease firing when suddenly the order for the sortie 
was countermanded, and Lieutenant Tomkins was going down 
the line passing the order to commence firing again, when he was 
shot in the mouth and fell. He must have offered a clear mark 
in the moonlight. Lieutenant A. W. Bailey had just brought 
up an order to his Commanding Officer from the General Officer 
Commanding and was shot in the side close to Lieutenant 
Colonel F. G. Vivian, and died in a few minutes. Lieutenant 
C. D. M. Harrington was lying in the trench with his men with 
his head against the parapet when a shot came from over the 
other side of the camp and hit him on the back of the head. 
Great sympathy was felt for the 28th Dogras for their extreme 
ill-luck on this occasion. About 2 a.m. the enemy suddenly 
stopped firing and began to clear off. At 6 a.m.. Captain Col? 
was ordered to move off with a half squadron of the 11th Bengal 
Lancers, and see if he could find any traces of the people who 
had attacked the camp. 

Outside the camp a crowd of people was seen who said that 
they were the followers of the Khan of Khar and had come to 
to help the Sirkar. One of these gentlemen who had said that 
he bad come to help the Sirkar was then asked who had attacked 



108 

the camp, and where they had come from. Of this he declared 
absolute ignorance, until a little persuasion was brought to 
bear on him by a few sowars, when this ignorant gentleman 
crawled on to his pony and led the party straight off after the 
enemy. After going some six miles the right flank patrol re- 
ported men going away to the right front; the direction was at 
once changed, and after a gallop of two miles the tail end of a 
party of tribesmen was overtaken and a number speared. They 
were followed into a gorge where the cavalry dismounted and 
opened fire. The enemy now having reached ground where 
they knew themselves to be safe, turned and opened fire, and 
those on the hills also began firing. The position being a most 
disadvantageous one for cavalry to act in, it was considered ad- 
visable to return at once. Directly the enemy saw the movement 
they came swarming down the hill, but the retirement was car- 
ried out with the loss of one horse killed and one wounded only, 
and the enemy followed to within four miles of camp keeping 
at a respectful distance and with one eye on a nullah. Three 
miles from camp the cavalry were supported by the Guides 
Infantry, and four guns, but it was then too late to take the 
offensive. 

On the 16th. three columns moved out to the north to pun- 
ish the enemy who had attacked our camp. The right column 
under Colonel Vivian, with the 38th Dogras, a section of Sappers 
and two guns, the centre one under Lieutenant-Colonel T. H. 
GToldney, one squadron 11th Bengal Lancers, four guns, 35th 
Sikhs, and Buffs, the left column to operate near camp under 
Major F. Campbell with the Guide?. The cavalry with the 
centre column soon came up with the enemy who had collected 
on a knoll at the foot of the hills 300 strong. On the appear- 
ance of the 35th Sikhs they moved off north, keeping close to 
the foot of the hills, and the 11th Bengal Lancers followed 
them, dismounting and tiring volleys as opportnnity occurred. 
The 35th then came up again keeping close to the foot of the 
hills for about an hour-and-a-half. but the enemy had dis- 
appeared among the rocks and hills. The 35th tiien moved 
half-right against the village of Shahi Tangi. The tribesmen 
were sniping at them, but there was no resistance. The village 
of Shahi Tangi was reached and burnt, and tiien it was deemed 
advisable to retire. Directly the retirement was commenced, 
the enemy appeared from all sides, rocks and ?itilia/is, and 
came on very boldly — people from the west of the valley coming 



169 

over to join in the figbt. The Sikbs were pressed very beavilj 
down tbe bill, the enemy coming up to within 40 yards. "When 
they reached the foot of the bill and got on to open ground the 
charge was sounded and fixing bayonets, the Sikhs charged 
their immediate front again, and a company of Buffs coming 
up covered their subsequent retirement. 

The 11th Bengal Lancers had all this time been watching 
the left flank, and had kept the enemy in check for a certain 
time until they saw the success of their movement against the 
35th, when they at once advanced against the cavalry. They 
were held by dismounted fire for half an hour, when having 
turned the left flank of the cavalry obliging them to retire, they 
immediately closed in on the left flank of the Sikhs, taking 
advantage of cover afforded by the nullah. The cavalry, bear- 
ing heavy firing in front moved forward again, and suddenly 
saw a company of Sikhs surrounded on three sides having 
a hot fight. The advance scouts of the 11th Bengal Lancers 
were seen to be very excited and signalling wildly ; the squad- 
ron came up at a gallop, and charged the right rear of a party 
of tribesmen closing on the Sikhs. Unfortunately a nullah 
intervened into which the enemy threw themselves, and the 
cavalry were unable to cliarge home. However, they came up 
with such a yell that the moral effect of cavalry was seen, the 
enemy not only clearing across the nullah but out of the 
village on the far side from which they had driven the cavalry 
three-quarters of an hour before. The Guides Infantry came 
up a short time after and swept the enemy away back on the 
left flank. The General Officer Commanding now came up. Tho 
L'uns were ordered up to a position covering Shahi Taugi, and 
the 35th and Buffs were ordeied to go for the enemy holding 
that village. One company, o5th, who had been acting as 
esc( rt to the guns was ordered up the hills on the right (Captain 
Ryder's Company). The Buffs and Sikhs soon cleared Shahi 
Tangi and after a halt retired again without much opposition 
to the position held by the guns. 

A halt was now made, and the towers and fortifications 
wtre destroyed by Sappers. At about 3-15 a gei\eral reliromeijt 
was ordered, and about thii? time a message was received from 
Caf'tain Ryder that he was being pressed, and he was ordered 
to retire at once, but apparently this message never reached 
him. A half company of Guides was also sent to support him. 



170 

Captain Ryder after some time saw the retirement of the Bri- 
gade, and attempted to conform, but was very heavily pressed, 
and could only do so very slowly. As the Brigade retired, the 
«nemy came on from the west of the valley again and pressed, 
but as the brigade cleared the place where the enemy had been 
first found by the 11th Bengal Lancers in the morning the 
tribesmen seemed to have got news of the company of the 
3oth on the hill, as they moved rapidly across to the east of 
the valley to cut off this company. The Guides were now sent 
to assist the 35th, and tlie brigade was halted on a small plain. 
The Guides moved up to the foot of the hills and took up a 
position to cover the retirement of the Sikhs. The retirement 
of the Sikhs was made down a long spur ending in a level ridge 
followed by tvvro small knolls. Lieutenant Hughes was killed. 
A half-company of Guides reached the Sikhs just at this level 
spot and as the euemy's swordsmen were running in among them. 
The men were dead beat-, they had had no water and a very 
heavy climb, and a very hard pressed retirement. 

The Guides gallantly carried the wounded Sikhs down the 
hill, and soon the little party came under the steady covering 
fire of the Guides at the foot. Still the enemy pressed on. 
Lieutenant 0. G. Gunning was cut over the back twice in the 
nullah at the foot of the hills by a man who got in rear of him, as 
be was using his revolver at three men facing him. He had 
already been shot in the face at the commencement of retire- 
ment;, so he was now in a bad way, but was carried safely into 
camj). When the Guides had been ordered to the relief of the 
Slths the brigade halted for some time, but as the Sikbs were 
reported near the bottom of the hill, orders were given to march 
on. Darkness came on and by some ill-chance the guns, a section 
of Sappers, with a small escort of Buffs and the General OflScer 
Commanding became separated from the column and found 
themselves left behind. 

The General Officer Commanding, finding himself in this 
position, made for a small village, but unfortunately the enemy 
got there at the same time and the escort was not strong enough 
to turn them out. Lieutenant T. C. Watson. R. E., with five men 
of the Buffs, made two gallant attempts to go back for reinforce- 
ments, but he was shot down, wounded in three places. Sever- 
al other unsuccessful attempts were made. A position was 
taken up under the eastern wall of the village and a trench 



171 

tbrowu up to afforJ some protectioD, but the enemy were lirin^ 
at ranges from five to twenty-five yards. The darkness of tbe 
night and the dead bodies of the battery mules certainly saved 
a number of lives, together with the fact that the enemy were 
afraid to face the guns. ' As the moon rose Major J. F. 
Worlledge, 35th Sikhs, who with four companies had been also 
lost in the darkness, and who was on the plain about 800 yards 
off, sent a sowar of the 11th Bengal Lancers to see if any 
assistance was required. This man quickly informed him of the 
critical situation, the four companies were brought up, and at 
once the enemy bolted. The party was left undisturbed for the 
rest of the night. The remainder of the brigade had reached 
camp about p.m. 

At daybreak the llth Bengal Lancers and 38th Dogras 
went out and brought in everybody. 

On the 17th the funerals of Lieutenants Y. Hughes, 35th 
Sikhs, and A. T. Crawford, No. 8 (Bengal) Mountain Battery, 
took place w^th full military honours. Further particulars 
showed that in the desperate fighting No. 8 Battery lost 31 mules. 
The losses were as follows : — 

British Soldiers — 

The Buffs, killed No. 4219. Private Aughir ; No. 4/9, Private Do(M.« : 
dangerously wounded No. 3088, Private May : severely Avounded No. 3180, 
Private Li\er ; No. 4840, Private Steffermaa ; No. 4268, Lanee-Corporal 
Smith : slightly wounded No. 3105. Lance-Corpo»al Judo-e ,- No. 3980, Lance- 
Corporal Boorman ; No. 3182, Private Nelthorpe ; No. 3997, Private Poiles : 
No. 4384 Private Neller. 

Xativc Soldiers — 

No. 8 Mountain Battery, killed 6, wounded 22 ; Guides, killed 2, 
wounded 1 Sabadar, 2 Havildars. and 7 men ; 35th Sikhs, killed 22, wonnded 
44; lUh Bengal Lancers wounded 2; Sappers and Miners, killed and 
wounded 15. 

Total killed 2 officers and 3G men, wounded 7 officers and 102 men. 




172 
CHAPTER XXXVIII. 

ANOTHBR ACCOUN'T OP GENERAL JEFFREYS' DISASTER. 

RITING in October with reference to the affair 
on September 16th, of which the published 
details were inadequate and unsatisfactory 
the Pioneer had the following : — In the Watelai 
Valley no one seems to have foreseen what a 
hornet's nest would be stirred up : hornets too whose stings 
made themselves felt. So far as we can judge, the idea 
was to let loose nearly the whole brigade in the valley, 
to punish every village of importance in a single day, and 
then march back again to Inay;atKilla. The brigade was 
due in the Mohmand conntry""^o~co-operate with General 
EUes' division ; its commander and the troops composing it 
had the further prospect of Tirah before them ; and there was 
every inducement to " polish off " the Mamunds who had been 
bold enough to fire into the camp below the Rambat Pass. 

To each Commandant was allotted a village or group of 
villages, and he was directed to deal with it independently. 
So the Buffs, the 35th Sikhs, the 38th Dogras and the Guides 
Infantry, each six companies strong, moved off to accomplish 
their task : a detachment of the 11 th Bengal Lancers, the 
mountain guns and the Sappers being held read}' for emer- 
o-er.eies in case of any pnrticularly strong opposition. The 
^!>ch Dogrras on the rigfht found the Aillatre of Damodalai far 
t< o strong to attack without avtiller}-, and Colonel Vivian very 
her-ibly returned to camp instead of knocking the heads of bit^ 
men against mud walls. On the left the Guides were successful 
in sweeping through some small hamlets, but had they pushed 
on to Agrah and Gat they would probably have had to with- 
draw as the 38th had done, for we know how sharp was the 
tiL'l'.ting in this direction days afterwards when the whole 
brigade was in action. Further up the valley the Buffs had 
disposed of one village also. It was in the centre that 
matters went wrong. The ooth Sikhs pushed well into the 
hills at the far end of the valley, and as the further mistake 
was made of splitting the six companies into three parties, the 



173 

Mamunds saw their chance and got to close quarters. Three 
companies which had begun to burn the village of Shahi Tangi 
were forced back, and they had to abandon the body of Lieu- 
tenant Hughes, who had been killed. Word was sent back for 
the Buffs and Guides to come up with all speed, and the 11th 
Bengal Lancers made a charge which, though it could not be 
driven home owing to broken ground, prevented the Sikhs 
from being surrounded. When the reinforcements arrived the 
jSlamunds were driven back, and Lieutenant Hughes' body was 
recovered. Then came a long halt of some three hours, which 
enabled the enemy to collect in full strength ; and when the 
retirement was eventually ordered, the tribesmen pursued 
their nsual tactics with considerable success. We do not 
oven know now how it came about that the two companies of 
Sikhs holding a hill over 2,000 feet high were left to fight there 
way down alone : an order, it is said, was sent to them to re- 
tire, but it never reached Captain Ryder. There was some 
desperate fighting, and the Guides Infantry had to double 
back to save the Sikhs who were attacked hy overwhelming 
numbers. It was here that the heavy losses occurred. 

The retirement down the Watelai Valley was weary work 
for the troops, for a thunderstorm came on, and as the enemy 
closed in it became pitch dark. The guns with a half-company 
of Sappers and 15 men of the Buffs got separated from their 
escort of four companies of the Sikhs, and General Jeffreys 
found himself belated with this small party. The valley is in- 
tersected with ravines and marching at night was no easy mat- 
ter, as the Guides, who formed the rear guard, discovered. The 
General eventually decided to take up a position under the 
walls of a village, and here for four or five hours the handful 
of British soldiers, gunners and Sappers had to defend them- 
selves against the enemy at very close quarters indeed. There 
were no means of sending off to camp for assistance, and it was 
not until the moon rose that the party were extricated about 
an hour after midnight. Such details as we have received of 
the fight under the village walls go to show that officers and 
men behaved with the finest courage. Lieutenant Wynter 
fought his guns after he was wounded until through faintness 
from loss of blood he could no longer give orders. Then a 
sepoy took him in his arms, and sat for hours shielding him with 
his own^body against the enemy's fire. It was an heroic action, 
and the sepoy was severely Avounded v/hile thus protecting; 



174 

Lis officer. Auotlier man coolly beat out with his coat the 
bundles of burning straw which the Mamunds threw from 
the house-tops to light up the ground and enable them to aim. 
The work was perilous in the extreme, but the sepoy went 
about it calmly and repeatedly extinguished the flaming straw. 

A Sapper svas sent out into the open to watch a door in the 
walls from which it was feared the enemy might rush ; his figure 
was outlined clearly with every flash of lightning and he 
was repeatedly shot at, but he stuck to his post, calling out 
from time to time to show that all was well. Again Major 
Worlledge with the relief party from the camp, finding that he 
could not reach the spot whence the noise of firing came, sent 
out a sowar to open communication with Genernl Jeffreys. 
This man passed safely through the tribesmen who were on 
the move across the valley, reached the village only to get a 
volley from his own friends, delivered his message and carried 
back another to Major Worlledge. Other instances of devotion 
and gallantry could be given, but enough has been said to'show 
that, as at Maizar, the Alalakand, Chakdara, and the Samana, 
our troops acquit themselves in splendid fashion. 

There was much criticism of the manner in whichj.the 
operations were conducted and the issue of the official des- 
patches was awaited with interest. 



CHAPTER XXXIX. 



PUNISHING THE MAMUNDS. 




HIS determined attack on General Jeffreys' Brigade 
made it necessary that be should counterraarch\nd 
punish the Mamunds and Salarzais. The Mamunds 
are numerically unimportant, the total number of 
fighting men on the most liberal estimate being 
only 1.500. Yet in the Chitral Campaign tbey were a con- 
stant source of uneasiness and trouble and were up in arms the 



175 

^vbolo time, the sniping into camp in the Jhnndoul Valley 
being laid at their door. Sir Robert Low and Brigadier-Gencrat 
"Waterfield almost implored to be allowed to punish them, but 
this step was forbidden. If this had been sanctioned it wonld 
have doubtless saved the present heavy loss in General JefPrejs' 
forces, and it could easily have been done, as our troops were 
only a day's march from the valley where the clan lives. This 
half-hearted policy was justly criticised at the time and its 
evils are now clearly seen. These few tribesmen, brave undoubt- 
edly, with that inordinate vanity which is the prevailing charac- 
teristic of the Pathan have in all probability believed that our 
troops were afraid to approach them in their fastnesses and that 
the arm of the ISirkar could not be extended against them. 
These Mamuuds live partly in Bajour and partly in Afghan 
territory, cultivating lands on either side of the frontier. They 
have been troublesome to Afghanistan as well as to India, 
and ever since Asuar was occupied some years ago the Amir has 
had endless trouble with them. These were the people by 
whom General Jeffreys had been attached to whom he was 
now going to thoroughly subdue. 

The news of the fighting witli General Jeffreys, the 
Mamunds and its heavy losses to our arms roused the greatest 
interest. It was expected that General Blood would have sent 
reinforcements to General Jeffreys. He did not do so because 
after the Thursday night when the tribesmen inflicted such 
heavy losses the operations in the valley were entirely success- 
ful. The villages were burnt and so thorough was the punish- 
ment that the villagers sued for mercy. At first fears had been 
entertained of a general rising of the Bajouris, but the success 
of General Jeffreys' punitive measures dispelled these. 

But all was not over with the Mamuuds and they persist- 
ently refused to surrender the twenty odd rifles they captured 
on the 6th. Accordingly General Jeffreys continued his punitive 
measure? and the fortified villages of the tribesmen were in turn 
burnt down. Still the enemy were most determined in their 
resistance, and on the 21st when General Jeffreys visited Umra 
Khan' s village, Zagai, there were again casualties on our side. 
The enemy in large numbers were on the surrounding hills, but 
their tire was kept under by the guns and volleys from the 
Buffs, who were in the most'eiposed position and consequently- 
suffered most. The casualties were: British wounded, Second- 



176 

Lieutenant G. N. S. Keeue, Uuattached List, and Lieutenant 
R. E. Power, of the Buffs ; rank and file nine ; native rank and 
file two. 

On September 22nd tlie 3rd Brigade marcbed from Nawagai 
to Kuz Chiuarai, tbus leaving tbe Malakand Field Force, and 
passing to General EUes's Command. Sir Bindon Blood with 
the Head-quarters Staff and two squadrons lltb Bengal Lancers, 
marcbed tbe same morning to Inayat Kila. The village of Das, 
west of Agrat, was attacked in the morning. The tribesmen as 
usual followed the returning troops, and thf ollowing casualties 
occurred : Guides Infantry, killed one, dangerously wounded 
one, 35th Sikhs, slightly wounded one. A squadron ^i ihe 11th 
Bengal Lancers again protected the flank and the Guides Infan- 
try executed the retirement with their customary skill and 
steadiness. Long experience on tbe frontier has made this 
corps specialists in bill fighting, and iu the severe actions of this 
week their value was felt by all in the force to have been 
inestimable. 

On the morning of September 23rd, General Jeffreys' Brigade 
marched to visit the fortified village of Tangi, the inhabitants of 
which were concerned in the recent fighting. The enemy 
appeared at first in small numbers, and the guns came into 
action at 8 o'clock. Firing continued until 11-45; the village 
was taken, the Guides first seizing the hills to the left. The 
38th Dogras were in the centre, the 35th Sikhs on the right, an-l 
the Buffs in reserve. Casualties : the Buffs, Major R. S. H. 
Moody, slightly wounded ; 38th Dogras, severely wounded, 
one. Lieutenant F. S. Reeves, of the Buffs, had a curions 
escape, tbe bullet striking his revolver and glancing thence 
through his case. 

Tbe Buffs were to march for Nowsbera on the 25th to 
join the Tirab Field Force and their departure was mucli 
regretted, as in the recent fighting they bad shown themselves 
worthy of the finest traditions of British Infantry. Tbe 
Eoyal West Kent from Panjkara replaced them. Up to date 
tbe Buffs' casualties had been: officers 3 ; soldiers 22; this 
out of greatly reduced strengtli. In the 2nd Brigade alone 
the losses of the week amounted to 14 British officers and 153 
men, besides nearly 150 transport animals, cavalry horses, 
officers' ponies, &c. 



177 

A great deal of ainmuuition had also been expended. 
On the 16th, the 35th Sikhs alone used 18,000 rounds. No. 8 
Bengal Mountain Battery was now unable to put more than 
four guns in the field, having lost a third of the mules, half the 
oflScers and a quarter of the men. 



CHAPTER XL. 




GENERAL JEFFREYS AGAIN HOTLY ENGAGED. 

.HE terms with which the obdurate Mamunds were asked 
to comply were the handing in of fifty breech- 
loaders and the sixteen Martinis captured on the 
16th. This they point blank refused to do, say- 
ing that the Martinis had been carried over the 
Afghan border and were irrecoverable. The Mamunds ad- 
mitted taking part in the Chakdara attack and the naive 
excuse they put forward for their unprovoked interference was 
that all the world was doing ghaza and' they simply joined in. 
They admitted also having attacked General Jeffreys' camp at 
Mirkiuai on the 14th, and in reparation for their misdeeda » 
their Jirgahs offered a sum of money and a few old useless 
breech-loaders ! The consequence was a re-opening of hostilities. 
General Jeffreys had now a full Brigade at his disposal, com- 
posed at follows: — - 

Royal West Keat. 

No. 7 Mountain Battery. 

Two squadrons of the Guides Cavalry. 

No. 4 Company, Sappers and Miners. 

31st Punjab Infantry. 

38th Dogras. 

Guides Infantry. 

In addition there was the colnmn at PaDJkora. 



178 

On tlie 30tb, the force advanced against Agrali and Gat, 
where serious fighting took place, and our losses were again 
large. When advancing against the village of Agrah the 
Guides Cavalry reconnoitred the ground, and reported that 
the village was occupied and that the adjacent heights were 
strongly held. The enemy appeared in considerable numbers 
both on the hills, where they displayed standards, and among 
the scrub in broken ground to the left. The action was 
opened by the cavalry who at 8-2 a. m. were fired on from the 
scrub and hills. Dismounted fire was at once ordered by 
Lieutenant-Colonel Adams and desultory skirmishing ensued. 
Meanwhile the infantry were advancing and at 9-15 a. m. the 
battery came into action shelling the enemy on the heights. 

The Guides Infantry then advanced to clear the hills to the 
left. The enemy who occupied mortures and sangars maintained 
a sharp fire, but on Major Campbell ordering the Guides to 
charge the hills these were carried. The Royal West Kent had 
now advanced in the centre and the 31st Punjab Infantry on 
the rigbt, and very severe fighting ensued. The British In- 
fantry cleared the village and attacked the tribesmen iu the 
sangars behind it. Second-Lieutenant W. C. Browne Clayton 
was killed by a volley at close range, and the enemy at once 
charged causing a temporary check ; but Major W. G. B. 
Western advanced with Lieutenant F. A. Jackson and one-and- 
a-half companies of the Royal West Kent and drove back the 
enemy and captured the sangars at the point of the bayonet. 

The losses had already been severe, and the 31st Punjab 
Infantry on the right were also hotly engaged. All the posi- 
tions were, however, held until the Sappers had completely 
destroyed the whole of the village. The return to camp was 
then ordered. The 38th Dogras under Lieutenant-Colonel 
Vivian now advanced to support the 31st Punjab Infantry on 
the right. The enemy did not, however, press the retirement 
as vigorously as usual, and the display of the cavalry prevented 
any advance into the open ground, but much firing was main- 
tained from the hills with some effect. No. 7 British Mountain 
Battery fired shrapnel at close range and kept the nearest spurs 
clear. All firing ceased at 2-10 p. m., and the homeward march 
was not molested. The enemy's loss could not be exactly esti- 
mated. It was however, thought to be heavy, as they did not 
follow the retiring. 



179 

An additional battalion of infantry would have been very 
welcome. The tribesmen displayed remarkable courage, tactical 
skill and marksmanship ; but, though their complete punishment 
would entail loss, everyone with the force was anxious that it 
might be proceeded with. The officers displayed great gallantry, 
most of the Royal West Kent having bullet holes in their 
clothes and helmets and nearly all having strange escapes. 

The following is the complete list of casualties : —British 
officers, killed, Lieutenant-Colonel J. L. O'Bryen, 30th Punjab 
Infantry, and Lieutenant Browne Clayton, Royal West Kent ; 
British officers wounded. Royal West Kent Regiment, severely 
Lieutenant H. Isacke, slightly Major Western, Captains R. C. 
Style and N. H. S. Lowe and Second-Lieutenant F. A. Jackson ; 
31st Punjab Infantry: severely Lieutenant E. B. Peacock; 
total officers eight. British soldiers, Royal West Kent, killed : 
3357 Pritave Berry, 3998 Private Jones, 3393, Private Thitson ; 
wounded dangerously, 4202 Private Sullivans, 3350 Private 
Buckland, 3554 Private Edwards ; severelv 2635 Private 
Bright, 1341 Sergeant Warner, 2952 Private Meagher, 4090 
Private Jipps; slightly 4140 Private Lalter, 3471 Private 
Gad, 2613 Private Gregory, 3454 Private Hewan, 2777 Private 
Scudder, 1320 Private Mills, 4303 Private Garns, 4179 Private 
Brooker, 4004 Private Everwett, 3114 Private Crampton, 4720 
Private King, 3346 Private Evans, 3541 Private Morgan ; total 
23. Native ranks killed ; 31st Punjab Infantry fifteen, 38th 
Dogras four j total casualties all ranks 58. 

In the Agrat action No. 7 Battery, Royal Artillery, fired 140 
shrapnel shells, and when it was apparent that the Royal West 
Kent and 31st Punjab Infantry were severely engaged. Major 
Pagan advanced his guns within 800 yards of the enemy and by 
constant fire kept many spurs clean. Though the guns came 
under sharp fire only one mule was killed. The want of more 
troops was severely felt : three additional battalions could have 
been fully employed ; and only the great skill with which the 
Guides Cavalry on the left were handled checked the enemy's 
advance from that direction. The 31st Punjab Infantry also 
suffered from having no battalion on their right flank. The 
difficulty and danger of attacking these fortified villages in 
broken ground and high crops is great, and it should be remem- 
bered that after an adequate camp-guard and the details have 
been deducted the brigade could only parade for fighting some 



180 

1,300 stroDg. In this small number the loss in a fortnight of 
245 was very severe. 

On the 3rd October, the 2nd Brigade with two batteries of 
artillery, under Brigadier- Geni^ral Jeffreys, at 6 o'clock as usual, 
attacked the village of Badilai. Very little opposition was 
encountered. The guns camft into action at 9 o'clock, shell- 
ing the village which was captured and completely destroyed. 
Tip to this time few casualties had occurred, but as soon as the 
withdrawal of the troops began the enemy appeared in great 
numbers, as many as three thousand being estimated to be 
present. Firing now became brisk and all the corps were 
involved, but the 31st Punjab Infantry were most severely 
pressed. The cavalry covered the retirement with great skill, 
but though the enemy showed much boldness they did not 
advance into ground which rendered charging possible, and 
took refuge in nullahs whenever threatened. Firing ceased 
at 2-30, P.M., and the force reached camp safely. The whole affair 
was extremely successful, but the loss was considerable. The 
casualties were as follows : — Royal West Kent, dangerously 
wounded, one ; 31st Punjab Infantry, killed one, wounded five ; 
Guides, Infantry wounded three; Guides Cavalry, wounded two; 
39th Dogras, one killed, three wounded ; total : killed two, 
wounded fourteen. 



CHAPTER XLI. 



COERCING THE MAMUNDS. 




HE stubborn character of the opposition with which 
General Jeffreys was meeting determined General 
Biudon Blood to go to his assistance and assume 
command of the brigade, and on October 2nd he 
wired that he was leaving with every man and 
cfun for Inayat Killa in order to finish off the Mamuud busi- 
ness at once. As the brigade was now strengthened by four 
field guns in addition to the same number of mountain guns, 



181 

together with the Highland Light Infantry, and 4 companies of 
the 34th Punjab Infantry, further operations were not expected 
to be attended with heavy loss. 

On the 4th October, General Blood decided to give all the 
troops at luayat Killa a rest before beginning the tedious work 
of finally coercing the Mamuuds. There was much to be done 
in restoring the mobility of the force after its hard experiences, 
and the field hospitals were strained greatly to satisfactorily deal 
with the large numbers of wounded. The final work of reduc- 
ing the Mamuuds to submission was not expected to be accom- 
plished without fighting, but the result was never in the slight- 
est doubt, and it was hoped that a week or so spent in reducing 
the villages to ruins and inflicting the other punishments which 
our punitive ideas permit of would complete the task and leave 
General Blood ready to operate elsewhere. The situation was 
a good deal complicated by the proximity of the scene of 
operations to the Afghan frontier, and apart from the openly 
made assertion that General Jeffreys had all along been fighting 
against Afghans as well as Mamunds, fears were entertained 
that with tribesmen holding land on both sides of the border- 
line it would be diflScult to reduce them to submission unless 
they were followed into Afghan territory. 

In the Mamund Valley the negotiations whicli Major 
Deane had been conducting with the Mamunds had made some 
little progress. The tribal leaders were informed that they 
must, as a preliminary measure, order back across the frontier 
all the men who joined them from Afghan territory. These 
men had nothing to lose, as they knew our troops could not cross 
the border liue and harry their villages. They were well armed, 
had abundant* ammunition, and their line of retreat was always 
secure. They thus fought on advantageous terms. 

On October 6th, news was brought in to the camp at Inayat 
Killa that a thousand men from across the border intended 
attacking the camp. The Mamunds, however, were said to be 
unwilling to join. Every precaution was taken, but the night 
passed quietly away without anything unusual occurring. 
The camp was now well protected by wire entanglements, a 
mud wall and ditch all round with several traverses in- 
side, and every endeavour had been made with mud walls and 
saddles to afford protection to the transport animals picketted 
within the camp, so that any attempt at an attack would be 



182 

severely punished. The Khans of Dir and Jhar were negotiating 
with the tribesmen for peace. It was evidence of the desire of 
the Mamunds to come to terms, that they should have refused 
to join in the proposed attack on this camp, and have dissuaded 
the badmashes from Kunar from themselves attacking our force. 

On the evening of the 7th three or four shots were fired at 
a guard of Guides Cavalry out with their grasscutters, who were 
occupied within a mile of camp. The snipers did no damage, 
and on being chased fled up the nullahs towards the hills. 
During the night three men were seen creeping up towards the 
24th Punjab Infantry lines, and on being fired at bolted. 

On the following night not a single shot was fired— a 
pleasant change. In addition to the Khan of Jhar's men some 
Mamunds themselves were doing pickets on duty for us. 
The Khan of Jhar came in on the 8th from his visit to the 
Mamunds, and brought in with him ten rifles, nine of which 
were of those lost by the 35th Sikhs in the action of tbe 16th 
September. Four more were said to be in the hands of Rahim 
Shah, the Political Agent, who, together with the Khans of 
Nawagai and Khar was still out with tbe Mamunds. Informa- 
tion showed that the Mamunds had lost about 350 killed, and 
the wounded lying in their villages amongst tbe hills were 
numerous*. Reports from the valley showed that the Mamunds 
had had a surfeit of fighting and were anxious to submit. 

A few days later came the end. On the 11th arrangements 
were ready for the durbar, and at about 1 o'clock in the after- 
noon a large and representative jirgah of Mamunds, accompanied 
by the Khans of Nawagai, Jhar and Khar, arrived and put up at 
the village of Nawah Killa, awaiting the fixing of the time 
and place for the durhai'. About 3-15 p.m. Sir Bindon Blood, 
accompanied by Major Deane, Chief Political Officer, Colonel 
Masters, A. Q. M. G., his A. D. C, and orderly officers, Mr. Davis, 
Assistant Political Officer, and a few other officers, with an escort 
of the Guides Cavalry, started for the durbar, which was held 
near Nawah Killa, about GOO yards away from the camp. On 
the arrival of Sir Bindon Blood the Khans were presented, and 
some hand-shaking occurred. The General sat down with 
Major Deane on his left and the other officers arranged on either 
side. The Jirgak with the friendly Khans formed up on three 
sides of a square, of which the General and his staff formed one. 
On the side to the left of the General were seated the friendly 



183 

Khans with tbeir retinup, and the representative yVr^a/^i- occupied 
the front and right hand sides. The jirgah was understood 
to express its regrets at what had occurred, and promised its 
complete submission and obedience in future. Its opposition 
had been made under the impression that we intended annexing 
the country. It was admitted that they had suffered heavy 
losses and great danger. The durbar lasted fifteen minutes, 
during which photographs and sketches were taken of the scene. 
At the close of the durbar the whole jirgah with hands upraised 
took an oath to adhere to the terms dictated to them. 'Y\\q jirgah 
was then dismissed. 

The Mamund jirgah having come in and submitted, 
there was no necessity for a further occupation of the valley, 
and on the 12th the force moved back marching the first 
day to tlie camp near Jhar. There it stayed a day or two before 
moving on into the Jhandol Valley. Every military precaution 
was taken during the march. The 1st Brigade provided the 
advance and baggage guards, and the 2nd Brigade, with the 
10th Field Battery, acted as the rear guard. Future movements 
of the force were still veiled in mystery, but a prolonged stay 
in the Swat Valley was feared. Among the terms of peace 
settled at the durbar was the following :— That TJrara Khan's 
men should be turned out of the valley. TheyVnya/^ also gave 
security for the return of the two rifles which had not yet been 
surrendered. It was considered that the damage done in the 
valley during our lengthened stay in it amply settled all other 
outstanding accounts with the tribe. 

General Sir Bindon Blood with a small escort paid a visit 
to the Salarzai Valley. It was found to be very similar in its 
general features to the Mamund Valley. The camp later on 
was moved five miles up the Salarzai Valley. The stay there 
depended on the political arrangements to be made. The 
Mamund Valley was evacuated without a single shot being fired, 
a sure sign of the complete submission of the tribe. 

On the 13th the force was at Camp Matashah, one of the 
principal villages in the Salarzai Valley, which appeared some- 
what more thickly populated than the Mamund Valley was. 
The villagers brought in firewood, and bhoosa was very plentiful 
in large stacks round each village or fort. The arable land in 
the valley had already been ploughed and sown, and the young 
crop was well up. The Salarzais were given up to that 



184 

evening to collect their jirgah and declare tbeir intention. It 
would not appear at first as if they were prepared for war. 
The people being still about their villages with their cattle ; 
but, as with the Mamunds, so here, the hill villagers were not 
so anxious for peace as the dwellers in the plain villages. The 
camp at night was surrounded by friendly picquets to warn off 
any possible snipers. 

On the night of the 14th snipers were again about, and 
several shots were put into camp without any damage being 
done. The head-quarters camp was apparently the mark aimed 
at. After this had gone on for some time, the friendly 
picquets realised that the time had come to show their zeal, 
and with much shouting and a shot or two they drove off the 
snipers. As is usual on such occasions, several narrow shaves 
were related. Orders were out for a reconnoissaucein force the 
following morning to the Ghakki Pass, and another up the 
valley towards Pashat. General Meiklejohn commanded the 
former, and Colonel Aitken the latter, with which General 
Blood went, and the field battery. A large convoy of warm 
clothing arrived this day, and this was distributed at once, and 
was hoped to be of aid in fending off fever, which was rather pre- 
valent in spite of quinine parade. The general health of the 
troops, however, remained good. The /irga/i was still reported 
unsettled and unable to come to an unanimous decision, and it 
was thought probable that after all their decision would be in 
favour of fighting. The following morning two squadrons of 
the Guides Cavalry and 400 of the Guides Infantry started 
about 10 A.M. to reconnoitre the valley about Pashat. One 
squadron, with the Infantry, advanced to examine the Chakki 
Pass through the hills between the camp and Pashat, whilst a 
second squadron went round the foot of those hills. The 
valley was found to be fairly broad, well wooded and apparently 
fertile, with a river running down the middle of it. The 
reconnoissance went to within two miles of Pashat, which was 
a large village, its principal feature being a strong fort, situated 
in the middle of the valley. In all the villages the inhabitants 
were busy at their usual daily occupations and seemed in no 
way disturbed by our appearance in their midst. A young 
crop of barley and wheat was springing up in all the fields. 
An English-speaking inhabitant greeted our soldiers near 
Pashat with a good morning. It was found that he had served 
ten years as a coolie on a sugar plantation in Demarara. An old 



185 

pensioner of tbe 27th Punjab Infantry was also found wearing 
the Frontier medal with four clasps. Some supposed Bud- 
dhist remains were found in the Pass, notably a cave. 

The next night was a quiet one, only one sniper having appear- 
ed, aud he very quickly moved off when a few of the Highland 
Light Infantry went out to sJi^kar him. On the morning of the 
16th at half -past eight, all troops except one company of each 
regiment and half a battalion of the 38th Dogras went out for a 
reconnoissance towards Pashat. This was pushed some little 
way beyond Pashat itself towards the head of the valley. It 
was found that the field guns could go easily as far as was re- 
connoitred, and that there would be no difiiculty in bringing 
them into action against any of the villages lying on the hill 
sides. The troops did not return until the middle of the after- 
noon. No opposition was encountered, and agricultural pursuits 
were being peaceably followed. The women and children were 
about, whilst fair sized herds were seen grazing at the foot of 
the hills. It would thus appear that the Salarzais did not 
intend fighting, but the jirgaks had not yet come in, and a very 
strong impression prevailed that they would declare for war. 
It was said that the delay is due to disputes between the jirgahs 
of the Upper and Lower Salarzais as to the proportion of the 
fines to fall on each. To further complicate matters, Ustad 
Muhammad, one of Umra Khan's chief men, was said to have 
come into the valley to try and create trouble, as he did so 
successfully in the Mamund country. 

News from the Salarzai Valley on the 17th predicted the sub- 
mission of the Salarzais. On that day a portion of the Lower 
Salarzai jirgah came in camp, and i\iQJirgah of the Upper Salar- 
zais came in the following day. A move forward was then made 
to impose terms of peace on some other of the many tribes which 
took part in the attack on the Malakand aud Chakdara after 
which the force returned to Chakdara. 




186 



CHAPTER XLII. 



Conclusion. 

LTHOUGH the campaign in tlie Mohmand country 
was not very exciting, it accomplished its woi'k 
most effectively, and there can be little doubt that 
the inhabitants of that land must now regret having 
listened to the blandishments of the Hadda 
MuDah, The purdah was lifted in the most thorough 
fashion, and not even Jarobi and the delectable valley 
flowing with milk and honey of which so much had been heard 
was omitted in the retributory march of the soldiers of the 
Sirkar. And apart from the moral effect of the over- 
running of the country General EUes inflicted very material 
punishment on the Mohmands. He collected altogether from 
the Mohmands 12 breech-loaders, 60 Enfields, 1,070 guns, 
850 swords, and Rs. 17,500 in fines, while the value of 
the forts and towers destroyed is estimated at Rs. 60,000. 
The expedition was reckoned to have cost the Mohmands 
a lakh and a half of rupees. 

The following was the final Mohmand Field Force order 
issued by Major-General Elles, C. B. : — "In relinquishing 'com- 
mand of the Mohmand Field Force, the Major-General Com- 
manding wishes to, thank all ranks for their hearty co-operation 
to ensure the successful issue of the expedition. It was not in 
the fortune of the Force to see much fighting, but on several 
occasions parts of the Division have been engaged with the 
enemy, and though the resistance was small heavy work has 
been entailed on the troops. General Elles would wish specially 
to notice the excellent work of the 20th Punjab Infantry. 
This fine regiment behaved most gallantly at Shabkadar before 
the expedition, losing 10 per cent, in action, and in the attack 
of the BedmaniPass, well supported by the Maxims, 2nd Batta- 
lion, 1st Gurkhas, and No. 3 Mountain Battery, crowned heights 
of 4,000 feet in the face of the enemy in a way which could not 
be exce-Ued. The General Officer Commanding would also acknow- 
ledge the good work done by the 13th Bengal Lancers, commenc- 
ing with the fine charge by two squadrons in the action at 



187 

Shabkadar. His best thanks aro also due to the 28th Bombay 
Pioneers, -and No. 5 Company, Bengal Sappers and Miners, 
whose services have been invaluable and greatly tended to the 
rapid completion of the expedition. It has been a great satis- 
faction to General Elles to have under his command the \^t 
Patiala Regiment, and the Nabha Infantry of the Imperial 
Service Troops ; the former regiment has taken its place in the 
fighting line with the regular troops, and both regiments have 
done good service. In bidding goodbye to the Force, General 
Elles wishes all success to those officers and corps who are 
fortunate enough to form part of the Tirah Field Force, and 
trusts that the experience gained in the short Mohmand 
Expedition will prove of value to them." 

All had for sometime been quiet in the Khyber Pass, 
but during the second week in September it was found that the 
Afridis had again put in an appearance at the Jamrud end and had 
been more than usually daring in their attacks, even venturing 
to fire on patrols and reconnoitring parties at short ranges. It 
was, however, exceedingly difficult to get on equal terms with 
them, as they were wonderfully quick in moving from hill to hill. 
It seemed probable at first that their boldness was occasioned 
by their having a large force behind them, but it is doubt- 
ful if their numbers ever exceeded two hundred ; or if they were 
the advance party of a large force, that force had thought dis- 
cretion the better part of valour and had gone back into the 
Afridi country. On Saturday, the 9th instant, a patrol of the 
4th Dragoon Guards under Captain D. P. Sellar was reconnoi- 
tring towards the Khyber Pass. Some of the enemy were seen in 
the Pass and were watched for some time by the patrol. But 
as their numbers were few, and it was doubtful whether they 
were the enemy or friendlies, the order was given to return to 
the fort at Jamrud. As the troop was moving off, the enemy 
fired at it, and one of the shots hit Private Mears, and he fell 
from his horse on to the road just in front of Captain Sellar, 
who at once ordered half his troop to dismount and line the 
crest of the nearest hill, whilst he and three of his men raised 
the wounded man up and placed him on a horse, when he ir^s 
sent back to Jamrud j the enemy, who had been reinforced, 
keeping up a heavy fire the whole time and advancing to within 
500 yards, although several of them were seen to fall under the 
fire which was kept up by the Dragoons. Eventually Captain 
Sellar mounted his men and took them back to the fort without 



188 

any further casualty, thanks to the bad marksmanship of the 
enemy and the excellent cover afforded by the hill. 

The next morning the usual patrol was sent out to the 
Samghakki Pass, which is about 2| miles from the fort. This 
Pass is a short one, fairly broad at one end, but very narrow 
for about twenty yards at' the other, and leads through a spur 
which juts for a considerable distance into the plain ; on the 
other side of it is the open plain leading to Bara ; this plain, 
however, being intersected by a number of nullahs and ditches. 
As Captain T. F, N. Jones with his patrol approached the Pass 
he left it at the mouth under command of Sergeant-Major 
Clarke, whilst be, Corporal Walton, Private Dance and a native 
sowar rode into the Pass itself. Just as they got to where the 
Pass becomes narrow, armed natives, to the number of about 
sixty, sprang up from behind the rocks and fired point blank at 
them. Captain Jones and Corporal Walton both fell dead, the 
officer with two wounds in his body and the corporal with five ; 
the corporal's horse and the sowar's were also killed, and Private 
Dance's horse slipped and fell, throwing its rider. The Ser- 
geant-Major, hearing the firing, at once brought up half the 
patrol, leaving the remainder at the mouth of the Pass to pre- 
vent their being cutoff, and so prompt was he that the patrol, 
which then only consisted of 10 men, got up to the spot before 
the enemy had time to mutilate the bodies, and managed to get 
them on to two horses and to bring them and the two dis- 
mounted men safely out of the Pass without further loss. A 
message was at once sent to the fort and a force was sent at 
once to the Pass, but without seeing any sign of the enemy, who 
had evidently gone off through the hills to Fort Maude, where 
about 200 of them could be seen through the glasses. Captain 
Jones of Ballina, Co. Mayo, was the son of Major Jones, who 
himself served through the Crimea in the same regiment. He 
was only 31 years of age and joined the service in 1889. 

In the Tochi Valley little of interest had happened during 
Augjy-o and September." On the 5th August letters were sent 
*.f >:a the leaders of the Madda Khel asking them to come into 
oarnp and hear from the General what the terms of the Sirhar 
were. At first they doubted our guarantee of safe conduct, but 
on the 17th General Corrie Bird held a durbar at which some 
Khazba Khel and Tori Khel Maliks were present. It was 
announced that Government demanded the return, in good con- 



, 189 

dition, of the property which had been lost at Maizar, the 
surrender of eighteen headmen, the payment of a fine still out- 
standing for the murder of a Hindu writer and a further fine 
of Es. 10,000 for the Maizar outrage. Ten days were allowed 
for consideration of the terras. About this time a Natire 
Officer was murdered. This oflacer was Subadiir Gurmukh 
Singh, Bahadur, the brave Sikh who with the small band of the 
14th Sikbs defended Chitral Fort, and received the order of 
merit for his conspicuous gallantry. There was a good deal 
of sickness in the Tochi Force, the Rifle Brigade suffering 
greatly, losing early in September from enteric fever Major 
Frank S. W. Raikes, second in command of tha 3rd battalion, 
and one of the most popular army men in India. His loss was 
much felt. Another British Officer also died. This was 
Lieutenant A. J. M. Higginson, who was several times wounded 
at Maizar, but died from enterie fever contracted when convales- 
cent from his field injuries. The news of the fighting at 
Malakand and elsewhere was known amongst the Waziris, but 
there were no signs of the spread of fanaticism amongst them, 
and our columns marched along the country unmolested. On 
the 14th September a party of 300 Highlanders, 800 Sikhs 
(14th) and 300 of the 1st Punjab Infantry moved up the 
Tartoi stream with the view of surprising the village of Dadum 
which belonged to Sadda Khan, the leader of that section of the 
Madda Khels with which the force had to deal. The surprise 
was complete and the party, which was fired at, brought 
away 200 cattle and sheep and a large quantity of arms and 
returned to camp after a fatiguing march of twenty-six miles or 
more. 

The Madda Khels had shown no signs of submitting to the 
terms laid down, and columns were sent 9ixt to visit the various 
villages, but little of interest happened. There was very great 
sickness amongst the British and native troops and letters from 
the front criticized severely the mild methods employed by the 
Political Officer and which were such as to render a punitive 
expedition a thing to be desired greatly by tribesmen. Another 
young officer second Lieutenant Kane of the Rifle Brigade 
dying of enteric fever. All connected with the force were uu/'^ 
doubtedly dead sick of a campaign which, whilst being deadl/'m 
a marked degree, had none of the glory of the warlike opera(?ions 
on other parts of the frontier. The force however/ was 
serving a valuable purpose in occupying the valley ap they 



190 

effectually kept in check the Wazi^is and prevenied any 
spread of the conflagration to their end of the frontier. 

All eyes were now centred on General Sir William Lock- 
hart and the Tirah Field Force, and the chances of opposition 
from the Afridis. Already there had been some preliminary 
skirmishing, and with the murch of our large army into the 
unknown land of Tirah the last and most powerful of the 
Sh'l-ar's troublesome neighbours was being dealt with and 
1 Je to pay toll for his share in the disturbances. 

j'erhaps this little volume of narrative cannot bo better 
j6>:<\ than by the following extract from the private letter o** 
an officer with Sir Bindon BlooJ, which clearly outlines th. 
leading features during twenty-four hours with a field force 
on the frontier ; " Reveille, is usually sounded about half-past 
five o'clock, but if we liappen^on a fine moonlight night it will 
be perhaps earlier. The instant it is sounded the peaceful quiet 
of the night is disturbed by souivls of hammering tent pegs, or 
the iron picket; ing pegs of animals, whilst the ' 'umming bird* 
as Kipling calls the camel, begins his usual morning'^ grumble. 
An hour is usually allowed from reveille till the 'fall in' is 
sounded for parade and then the march commences. In this 
hour officers get their ckota hazri (and in some regiments the 
Tommies get tea). Afterwards kits are packed, tents dropped 
.ind the whole loaded on either mules or camels. Then all th^ 
iegiments collect at a fixed place, leaving a baggage guarc' 
and a rear guard. When the order is given to march l : 
advance guard is sent forward and the regiments in fours 
follow. Behind them comes the ammunition and hospitals 
and then the baggage and rear guard. There are generally 
one or two halts durii^the march. On arrival the Staff fix on 
the place for camping with due regard to water and defence, 
and theu lines are laid out. It is generally some ♦■iine before 
L^e baggage appears. 

" Meantime Tommy piles arms during wnviw nne one 

hears such remarks as * Them Simla- are playing a 

./a.me of chess with we' and the affairs are generally discusse^. 
A' . arrival of the baggage, tents are pitched, and the coots 
<^et \<) work. Guards are detailed, fodder-cutting, wood-cuffing, 
water pickets, &c., &c. After the men have had a rest they wul 
1 : ut to put up a shelter trench ail round the camp 



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